Primavera, The Art of Debate

Primavera was pleased to sponsor The Cambridge Union as they debated: 'This House Would Return Looted Art Back to Its Country of Origin'...
From its small beginnings as a debating society, the Cambridge Union currently has over 70,000 life members worldwide. Now the oldest debating society in the world, and the largest student society in Cambridge, the Union remains a unique forum for the free exchange of ideas and the art of public debate.

Primavera was pleased to aid in sponsoring the debating event on the 25th of April that examined the motion that ‘This House Would Return Looted Art Back to Its Country of Origin.’ Speakers of the debate included, Dame Janet Suzman, Professor Lord Colin Renfrew and Dr. Kevin Childs. To contribute to the art-based debate, Primavera provided pieces of ceramics and glasswork by Tony Laverick and Anthony Stern as examples of traditional and multi-cultural designs that have been integrated into contemporary British Art and Craft.

The results of the night voted in favour of the return of looted art back to its country of origin, though many speakers expressed and shared views that the repatriation of artwork was perhaps best addressed on a case by case basis.
The pieces contributed by Primavera took centre stage during the debate, and allowed the audience to touch and handle them, aiding in their understanding as to why such a motion must be debated, especially when it comes to the management of one-of-a-kind works of art.
Phil Arthur | Birds and Beverages
Phil Arthur is a potter based in North Norfolk specialising in terracotta slip decorated bird jugs. Having been a production wheel thrower, making functional domestic ware, Phil has become increasingly interested in the freedom and scope of the hand-building techniques. Phil has developed a line of bird and animal form pots using thrown shapes as the basis for altering and constructing. The bird forms are inspired by, and follow in the tradition of 17th century English slipware owl jugs but have been taken a step further, allowing influence of Pre-Colombian vessels and the pots of Piccasso. Each lidded jug is assembled from individual wheel-thrown and altered pieces. They are made in terracotta clay, slip painted and decorated with scraffitto. Upon the delivery of these pieces to Primavera this morning, visiting jeweller, Bettina Stark pointed out the similarity between Phil’s ceramic forms and those of the late, renowned potter, Mary Wondrausch; who used to display her work at Primavera gallery. It is a wonder to see such a traditional method so masterfully adapted to create unique pieces of ceramic artwork.
Vicki Ambery-Smith | Le Petit Pigeonnier
Every now and again we receive some new work which stands out as simply outstanding in its field and Vicki Ambery-Smith’s architectural silverwork is just that. Vicki takes her inspiration from architecture on an international scale and creates wonderful interpretations of both classical and contemporary buildings which we are already familiar with. Far more than a representation of a building, each becomes an exquisite study of shape, surface, light and space. Alongside her beautiful Cambridge inspired architectural designs displayed within the gallery, Vicki has also brought us a set of three ornate miniature pigeonnier boxes. Each box is unique in both its interior and exterior designs, with the largest of the three finished with sterling silver walls, copper brandished roofing and gold-plated insides. You can find the set of three “dovecots” in the display window of Primavera.
Mo DeRôme | Candid in Cambridge
Maureen (Mo) DeRôme is a local Cambridge artist. Always looking for inspiration on her strolls around town or sitting in her favourite café on King’s Parade, Maureen explores people and the relations between them in her original watercolour and ink motives. Whether in deep conversation, thought or in a candid setting, she captures the everyday intimate moments of Cambridge life. Displayed in Primavera’s Cambridge Room are several of Maureen’s original watercolour and ink artworks.