Cat Santos

About Cat Santos

I have been a print maker since leaving Saint Martin’s School of Art in 1981 and had my own T shirt printing business for 30 years. Silk screen, mono printing, lino and etching. I have always loved the process of printing and the challenges of controlling the medium. About ten years ago I took up ceramics, and found how sympathetic the surface of clay is to taking print. I explore various techniques using slips, oxides and underglazes and, to add to the possibilities, there’s all that variety of clay surfaces to use, from smooth, white porcelain, to deliciously dark, black clay or heavy, textured, grogged clay.

In my T shirt printing it was important that all prints looked exactly the same, but in my more low-tech experimental ceramic printing, what I like is the inevitable unique details of each piece.

Unlike printing on paper or fabric, the thrill of ceramics is the transformation of the materials in the kiln. Of course, one gets to predict pretty well how the various materials will interact with each other in the heat, but there are always some surprises, and that’s what I like. It's as if some other hand has put the final touch to my work.

My imagery is often about people in spaces - the scale of our environment – and, as I try to capture moments of the wonder it is to live on this earth, I grapple to comprehend all that science is teaching us about ourselves and our world. But not always in such a serious way! In an age-old ceramic tradition, I do like to add some humour to my images…

I hope you enjoy my work.