Jack Hanley









folk art




The Art of Salmagundi is the artwork of artist and restorer, Amy Douglas. "Salmagundi" is an old french and middle english word relating to a hodgepodge of things, a mixture and a variety of ingredients.

Staffordshire figures,were based on prints and pamphlets which advertised attractions at local country fairs. They often depicted curiosities, celebrities and heroes of the day. They were sold mostly at fairgrounds as ‘toys”, they were objects for the common man to take home for his mantelpiece, as a souvenier of the time .

Amy is an artist and a restorer. As an artist her practice involves the use of applied arts and transformation of objects.The broken Staffordshire ceramic figures each have a unique break or loss in the body of the sculpture. This adds an element of serendipity to the project. Each piece had an original theme or identity , Amy adds a twist on the original work, a new life and modern story . Using old folk tales and modern mythologies Amy transforms these antiquities into modern statements of our times.

Amy's job is to restore ceramics and decorative arts for clients. The job of the restorer is to try and mimic what the artist has done before,to place yourself in the artists past applications, how they made a mark , mixed a glaze. To deceive the modern viewer into believing what they are seeing is work of the past.

" The way I work on an intervention, is to allow the damage dictate what can be done. I use traditional and modern restoration and conservation grade materials to create my work seamlessly linking the past to the present , through invisible application. Many of the techniques, materials and recipes I use have been in the hands of the craftsman for centuries. In our more increasing, untangible, fleeting, modern existence , I think people do not look properly and do not acknowledge the craftsmanship of work. I like the idea of making people look twice."

Amy Douglas started her art career at Edinburgh College of Art , then trained in The Decorative Arts at The City and Guilds of London Art School ,and has an MA in printmaking from Camberwell College of Art.

Amy restores ceramics, specialising in gilding. www.amydouglasrestoration.co.uk