No, not those kinds of jugs, no time for sniggering and innuendo, these are real works of art. Jugs of incredible beauty and detail. Once you've seen and handled them you'll find them hard to resist. (A little secret: I have a collection of them. Contrary to some, I think that a collection is a good and decent pursuit, especially if it looks beautiful and can be used.)
Jugs have been around for a very, very long time and in reality they have evolved very little since they were first created to transport and store liquids. That's what's so marvellous about this potter's work, she constantly perfects and refines her work, each year producing a new range, but essentially focusing on the simple jug form. She works both in stoneware and earthenware, her work is incredibly tactile, often incorporating incised or grooved lines and contrasting glazes. They're all about form, texture and surface. And the function.
Nicola Tassie cares about how they feel and how they pour, as well as how they look. They are the perfect vessels for everything from gravy to custard, they look lovely containing a clutch of flowers, and they have such character and presence that they can just sit quietly displaying their beauty on a shelf. Their broad bases make them very stable, they remind me somehow of nesting birds, they're very comfortable forms.
Her work is available at Margaret Howell, Wills Lane Gallery and several other places but if you get your skates on there is in an exhibition and studio sale 13th to 22nd December. Perfect jugs make perfect presents.
Standpoint Studios, 45 Coronet Street, Shoreditch, London N1 6HD. Tel: 0207 729 5292