The Leach Pottery’s third Leach-Seasalt Apprentice, Annabelle Smith is preparing to host the first solo show of her career in November.

Marking the end of her three-year apprenticeship in the Pottery’s centenary year, Annabelle’s exhibition, titled, 'Annabelle Smith: An Apprenticeship’, will run for six weeks in the Leach Pottery’s Shop Gallery from November 6 to December 18, with all works for sale.

Truly breaking the mould, 26-year-old Annabelle is the Leach Pottery’s first female apprentice.

A true contemporary Cornish collaboration, Annabelle’s apprenticeship is funded by popular Cornish brand Seasalt.

Her three-years of training will culminate in a final exhibition, taking place in the Pottery’s Shop Gallery featuring a rich display of functional and imaginative forms, including; teapots, chargers, flat platters, lidded bottles, bud vases, wine cups and utensil drainers.

Annabelle’s work draws inspiration from nature, using found materials to create tactile, carved surfaces and warm glazes.Expect an innovative range of domestic tableware and more unexpected thrown and joined forms, showcasing the skills that she has developed and refined over the course of her three-year traineeship.

Annabelle said: “This studio environment has totally changed my life. I feel myself transforming into a competent, confident artist within my work-time and my own practice and it’s all thanks to the Leach Studio team.

"Watching how people work here has shaped the potter I am becoming, but some core aspects of my work have remained a fascination and will always be a recurring theme.

Annabelle continued: “My hope is that the bright colours of my work show the fun side of what you can do with production pottery and show the possibilities of wares you can make by joining thrown pieces together. I really enjoy making pots with two pieces to become a whole, for example, lidded jars, corked bottles, and sticking thrown pieces together to create something the pottery wheel couldn’t do in one go.”

Sonya Corrigan, director of brand at Seasalt said, “Seasalt and The Leach Pottery have a long-standing relationship, and seeing Annabelle, the third Seasalt Leach Apprentice, graduate is testament to the work the Pottery puts in to progress its students and ensure Cornwall continues to foster a thriving arts scene.

"Through the Apprenticeship scheme, we have watched Annabelle’s progression from novice to professional and it has been such a joy to see, as has reading her blogs and videos she’s created for us as she’s documented her journey in pottery.”

Libby Buckley, director at Leach Pottery said, “Since the 1920s, the Leach Pottery has championed the creative development of potters and the Apprenticeship scheme is a crucial element of this. Annabelle is a very talented potter and we are pleased to have supported her on her journey, whilst continuing the legacies of Bernard Leach and Shoji Hamada.

"I would very much like to take this opportunity to thank Seasalt, who provide the opportunity for Apprentices to train and study at the Leach Pottery as part of their Leach-Seasalt Bursary.”

Annabelle’s exhibition will run from November 6 to December 18 for six weeks in the Leach Pottery Shop Gallery.

There will be a Preview Day from 10am - 6pm on Friday, November 6. Visitors will need to book their time-slot between 10am - 4pm, but from 4pm - 6pm it will be drop-in, with a maximum of six people in the Entrance Gallery and Shop at any one time.