Our ceramics are made by local artists - ordinary people from the Midlands of KwaZulu-Natal, who are given training, materials, a studio and a guaranteed market for their work, under the guidance of our founder, Fée Halsted.
Lovemore Sithole was born in 1962 in Bulawayo, Zimbabwe. His early schooling was interrupted when he joined recruits to train as a freedom fighter during the Zimbabwean War of Independence.
After the war, in 1982, he returned to Bulawayo and joined the Mzilikazi Arts and Craft Centre where he learned his ceramic skills.
Four years later, when trouble broke out between the ZANU and ZIPRA forces, Lovemore fled to South Africa. Safe in his new home country, Lovemore used his talent as a thrower to find work in Johannesburg, creating large terracotta planters for various clients.
After ten years, and nervous of growing xenophobia in the city, he moved to the calm of the rural Free State where he found part-time work producing tableware.
Artistically, however, he was unfulfilled and in 2007 he returned to Johannesburg where he heard that Ardmore needed a thrower. Inspired and hopeful, Lovemore immediately telephoned Fée Halsted, founder of Ardmore, and drove to meet her for an interview.
Realising he had great skill, Fée invited him to join Ardmore as a thrower for the sculptors, who needed forms onto which they add sculptural elements.
Today, Lovemore has become Ardmore’s main thrower, and is a stable father figure and respected leader, emphasising a strict code of moral decency to the community and leading by example through his inherent trustworthiness.
His technical skills have heightened the studio’s quality and his disciplined work ethic assists with increasing productivity.
He is known for his spectacular large tureens, and also threw all of the plates for the limited edition Ardmore Design Collection dinnerware.
Lovemore, who is the general production manager at Ardmore, says: “I enjoy working with Ardmore – here I can live a better life and feed my family.”
As Ardmore's master thrower Lovemore's work has been included in every Ardmore exhibition since he started in 2007.