Working in partnership
The permanent ambition of the Contemporary Ceramic Centre La Borne (CCCLB) is, on one hand, to promote the production of local ceramics and, on the other hand, to create awareness of ceramic art among the general public by re-establishing it at the heart of contemporary creation in all its dimensions by setting up a production site, an annual artistic programme of exhibitions, public events, artist residencies and outreach activities. The Contemporary Ceramics Centre of La Borne is a cultural and tourist amenity of the Communauté de Communes Terres du Haut Berry. The programme of exhibitions at the CCCLB works hand in hand with the permanent artistic activities of the Ceramics Association of La Borne and in collaboration with all of its members.
For la Communauté de Communes Terres du Haut Berry, the CCCLB is a key instrument in enhancing the attractiveness of the area in the cultural and tourist fields and to boost the services offered to the local population.
As part of this and in close collaboration with all its partners (the La Borne Ceramics Association, the Pottery Museum, the Ivanoff Museum and the National Higher School of Art in Bourges) the CCTHB is committed to making contemporary ceramic culture accessible to all members of the public.
The Ceramics Association of La Borne
Since 1971, the Ceramics Association La Borne (ACLB) has shown its dynamism by organising regular events, international meetings and exhibitions in the former girls’ school, and since 2010, in the Contemporary Ceramics Centre of La Borne. The Association currently has over 70 members with thirteen different nationalities all living and working within a radius of 35 km. They all create unique pieces, utilitarian pottery and sculptures. Techniques and types of firing have become more diversified, although wood still has a special place with around thirty kilns in operation. The Ceramics Association of La Borne is a member of the National Collective of Ceramists. It is a member of Ateliers d’Art de France and “devenir.art”, an association of cultural stakeholders in the visual arts within the Centre-Val de Loire region. It works in collaboration with the Communauté de Communes Terres du Haut Berry, which is responsible for operating the Contemporary Ceramic Centre of La Borne.
The National Higher Art School of Bourges
The National Higher Art School of Bourges (Ensa Bourges) is a publicly administered institution of higher education in the arts. It provides training for young people in the field of contemporary art via numerous workshops for artistic expression which are made available to them.
The teaching team is made up of artists and theorists who are highly involved in professional circles, and of high-level technicians. They use teaching methods that remain in direct contact with all the issues that drive contemporary creation and question the principle challenges that face society. Accompanying students throughout their training, the administrative and technical team plays an important role in monitoring their progress and is involved in all the steps relating to reception, orientation, internships, associative projects and the creation of direct links with professionals in the world of cultural creativity.
Rue Edouard Branly
02 48 69 78 78
The network of partners in La Borne
The Museum of Pottery
The Pottery Museum was created in 1987 by the Association for the Safeguarding and Protection of the Pottery Heritage and the La Borne site (Association Law of 1901), with the aim of safeguarding the site and curating works and documents of pottery heritage. Over the years, the Pottery Museum has built up a noteworthy collection of antique work from La Borne.
Utilitarian items such as salting pots, jars, dairy utensils, pitchers and bowls have pride of place here, along with the potter’s, woodcutter’s and clay extractor’s tools. The anthropomorphic bottles and fountains made in the Talbot dynasty are also to be found here.
Every year, the museum presents a themed exhibition, an opportunity to explore pieces that have been lent by other museums, by collectors or bought by the association.
Videos on the potters’ work and the workshops in La Borne and a small bookstore and postcard area round off the visit.
Museum of Pottery
02 48 26 73 76 – 02 48 26 98 31
The Ivanoff Museum
Vassil Ivanoff (1897-1973) was a Bulgarian artist who arrived in France in 1922 in search of new opportunities. In 1927, he settled in Paris, where he displayed his talents as a decorator. He became a remarkable colourist, as was shown in his superb painted fabrics. At the same time his gift as a photographer was to become apparent. In 1945, he discovered a book by the English ceramist William LEE at a book stand on the banks of the Seine. He found himself utterly fascinated by pot-throwing and the huge possibilities that stoneware could offer. In 1946 he moved to La Borne, living in a small two-roomed agricultural cottage. He worked there until his death in 1973. His creativity and his sumptuous ox-blood red glazes were to rapidly earn him a reputation, and several exhibitions during his lifetime showed the extent of his talent. Today, Vassil Ivanoff is considered to be a major figure in contemporary ceramics, and enthusiasts agree that his work is one of the great achievements of the 20th century.
The Vassil Ivanoff Museum has over 550 works of art and numerous painted fabrics. In his small cottage, Vassil Ivanoff set up his workshop, his wheel and the two thirds of a cubic metre wood-fired “Sèvres type” kiln, all in this little rustic house. Since 1996, this has building been listed as a historical monument. The artist’s ashes were laid to rest in the garden adjoining the museum.
In 2019, the Communauté de Communes Terres-du-Haut Berry became the owner of the museum buildings and the residential house.
La Borne d’en Bas
The network of ceramics centres
Ceramic centres are key stakeholders in the economic and cultural development of our regions, and in craft and artistic activity around contemporary ceramics. They are at the heart of a drive towards professionalism and the transmission of outstanding knowledge. Our joint action is looking to develop in this direction by supporting and accompanying new ceramic creativity.
The network currently includes:
The Ceramics House of the Pays de Dieulefit
The European Institute of Ceramic Arts of Guebwiller
Contemporary Ceramics Centre of La Borne
The Ceramics Association of La Borne
The Mediterranean Pottery Museum
The Terra Viva Gallery
The Ceramics Centre of Giroussens
The network of partners involved in professional placements
The CCCLB is a stakeholder committed to supporting and accompanying the professional integration of young ceramists. It regularly collaborates with training centres and the network of art schools, and offers introductions, visits, courses and workshops on wood firing. For example, the CCCLB regularly collaborates with: