It’s a Gifted experience for local ceramicist

Derry ceramicist Neil Boyle will showcase his work, including these jugs, at Gifted ' The Contemporary Craft and Design fair, which takes place at the RDS Main Hall from December 5-9.
Derry ceramicist Neil Boyle will showcase his work, including these jugs, at Gifted ' The Contemporary Craft and Design fair, which takes place at the RDS Main Hall from December 5-9.

A talented ceramicist and university lecturer from Londonderry who says working with clay excites his imagination will showcase his work at Gifted – The Contemporary Craft and Design Fair.

With over 500 designers, makers and artisan producers displaying original gifts, the traditional opening to the festive season in Dublin is set to attract over 45,000 people to the RDS Main Hall over five days, December 5-9.

Neil Boyle, who is also a part-time associate lecturer in Art and Design with the North West Regional College in Derry, crafts a collection of large animals hand-built in crank clay.

“Clay is the medium which excites my imagination and in which I can think best,” Neil said.

He added: “As an associate lecturer, my work is divided between the happy balance of working with creators and working in my studio, continuing my own exploration of a medium that continues to excite my imagination.”

Neil brings his pieces to life with imagery, inspired by nature, that he carves and impresses into the work before finishing with a number of stoneware glazes that allow his work to be displayed both outdoors and indoors.

Neil added: “The tactile quality of working with a bit of clay, whether it is working sculpturally, using traditional hand-building making skills, or be it on the potter’s wheel, it’s a labour of love.”

Alongside these striking animal sculptures, Neil will also display a range of his other work, including large decorative jugs.

Other producers from Londonderry who will satisfy gift-seekers with their handcrafted work at Gifted include The Stone Art Gallery.

“Gifted is a celebration of Christmas giving and will feature the country’s largest collection of thoughtful gifts for your loved ones,” said organiser Patrick O’Sullivan.

He added: “It is a unique opportunity to interact with the most creative people in Ireland and discover thousands of original products available only at Gifted.

“Our curated offering gives you the opportunity to secure once-off presents from a wide selection of contemporary Irish jewellery, fashion, accessories, ceramics, interiors, art, photography, and children’s gifts.

“Giving a Gifted gift to loved ones this Christmas means that they will receive a present that has been lovingly created and probably can’t be sourced anywhere else.”

Gifted also features The Spectacular Christmas Food Emporium with over 100 artisan food producers, where you can meet the experts who can help you plan and source every aspect of your festive meal right up to the bronzed turkey.

There will be 10% off everything at Gifted on the opening day, Wednesday, December 5.

Full details can be found at www.giftedfair.ie