Michael Astill

Iles Des Chenes, Manitoba


Michael Astill is fascinated by the complimentary textures found in nature and industry.  It’s difficult to walk past any concrete structure and not enjoy the wonderful wood-grain texture left by the forms or the perfect imprint in the soft earth left by the sole of a shoe.

Clay has it’s own natural textures: the smoothness of porcelain, the coarseness of clay heavy with aggregate, the cracking surface of short clay.  It is also an incredible medium to take textures from other sources.  These textures are then enhanced or subdued by the firing process.

Steel is an interesting contrast to clay.  It can take on texture much like clay and it is shaped and changed by heat and force.  Rebar (structural steel used to reinforce concrete) has surface ridges to enhance its function.  As a result it becomes a very appealing material for Michael because it brings a small part of industry to his work.

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