Rare Earthenware - Toby Smith .

Unknown Fields Division
with Ceramicist/Artist Kevin Callaghan, 2014–5
black stoneware and radioactive mine tailings

©Toby Smith

While journeys to extraordinary places are the cornerstone of luxury travel, this project follows more well-conceale journeys taking place across global supply chains. It retraces rare earthelements, which are widely used in high end electronics and green technologies, to their origins. The film, developed with photographer Toby Smith, documents their voyage from container ships and ports, wholesalers and factories, back to the banks of a barely-liquid radioactive lake in Inner Mongolia, where the refining process takes place.
Unknown Fields Division, in collaboration with Kevin Callaghan, have used mud from this lake to craft a set of three ceramic vessels. Each is sized in relation to the amount of waste created in the production of three items of technology:
- a smartphone 
-a featherweight laptop
- the cell of a smart car battery

The resulting film and 3 vases were displayed at
the V&A in April 2015.