burton art gallery and museum
gallery highlights




Kingsley Road, Bideford, Devon EX39 2QQ

Telephone: 01237 471455
Email: info@theburton.org

Admission is Free
Open Daily 10am - 4pm
Sundays 11am - 4pm

Penny Simpson

Penny Simpson


Penny Simpson makes earthenware pots in her studio in Moretonhampstead, Devon. She first became interested in ceramics and began making pots whilst working as a teacher in Japan in the 1970s. She was captivated by Japanese food and its presentation, with the colours and textures of pots chosen to complement the food and the season. She explored many of the pottery-making areas of Japan and is the author of ‘The Japanese Pottery Handbook’ (Kodansha 1979).
She returned to England to study pottery full time at Dartington Pottery, working mainly in stoneware and salt-glaze. Penny then opened her workshop in 1983. The pots are hand thrown in red earthenware clay and are decorated with coloured ‘slips’. Layers of colour are applied using a variety of techniques including brushing, pouring, trailing and sgraffito. They are then fired, glazed and fired again to 1120 degrees in an electric kiln. Penny believes that good food deserves a good setting, and designs her tableware with that in mind. Her continuing love of food and cooking has maintained her interest in making pots for everyday use and thus they are both oven proof and dishwasher safe. Inspiration for the designs draws mainly from nature, with themes of fish, birds or leaves as recurring motifs.
Penny’s interest in interior design led to her developing a range of tiles and one range is for sale in Homebase stores. She enjoys working on tiling commissions for kitchens and bathrooms with private clients. Public commissions include tile panels as part of the refurbishment of Minehead Hospital.
Penny is a member of the Craft Potters Association and the Devon Guild of Craftsmen. As well as selling from her own showroom, she exhibits widely in the UK and abroad.

lottery funded