Glenfiddich Residency


As a result of being awarded the Glenfiddich Residency Prize at the RSA New Contemporaries,
Lorna undertook a three month residency at Glenfiddich Distillery in the Scottish Highlands as part of their prestigious international artists-in-residence programme.

The sourcing and processing of the local Dufftown clay was the starting point of the work, allowing for a learning of place through the very earth of it.

The Cabrach, catching, Tower of Silence, Ben Rinnes, between
Ceramic glazed in Dufftown clay

These forms came from looking into the history of the landscape and the relationship between place and community. Part of this was researching the prehistoric beliefs of local people, exploring underworlds and special places. One of these places being the Cabrach which is an area of moors that sits above Dufftown, it's burns feeding many an illicit whisky still over the years. Reckoned to be the birthplace of malt whisky, it is a wild place with a beautiful landscape and long history. Overlaps also appeared between ancient practices in Moray and those of Zoroastrian cultures. These various strands came together in an investigation into the relationships between earth, water and fire within place and anthropology.

Dufftown Quaichs 
Dufftown clay

A series of quaichs made from the found clay that sits close to the banks of the River Fiddich.
The spirit of the place drank from the fired earth of the place by those at the Glenfiddich exhibition opening. Andy Fairgrieve, curator of the residency, dished out the whisky and toasted “Tae us”.

Quaich is a Scots rendering of the Gaelic word “cuach” (meaning cup). A quaich is a traditional Scottish bowl.
Evolving throughout history the vessel is now most commonly used for drinking whisky or the like, drunk from at special occassions, to welcome or to bid farewell. The quaich has been known as the “Loving Cup” or the “Cup of Friendship”, a gift, a way of sharing, and showing trust to those you are with (through the two handles keeping both hands occupied).
Combining an investigation into the history of the community, and the mystery and alchemy of the Spey landscape within a culturally important vessel.

Photography by Ali Madani

Glenfiddich, Valley of the Deer 

Ceramic glazed in Dufftown clay

Glenfiddich meaning valley of the deer. This form is a continuation of the artist’s exploration of landscape and vessel, and how those two things intertwine. The geographic strata created on the top plane of the sculpture resulted from experimentation with the local clay’s behaviour.


Phone: +44 7775808202
Instagram: lorna_.phillips

Lorna Phillips is an emerging artist, graduated in Sculpture from Edinburgh College of Art.
Living in Edinburgh, Scotland. Working primarily with the material of clay.

© Lorna Phillips 2023