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Ceramic Revisions II curated group exhibition 28 November to 23 December 2017

Ceramic Revisions II curated group exhibition 28 November to 23 December 2017

Pots, tiles and clay figurines have taught us fascinating details about ancient societies and Ceramics Revisions II conveys how artists interact, form narratives, voice opinions and create aesthetic compositions with this medium today. The second edition of a series that started in 2009, this show ranges from fine vessels to sculpted forms, encompassing a variety of ceramic techniques, as well as clay types - from terracotta to bone china. Regardless of the form, this final show for 2017 brings together a range of artists who are masters of their medium.

MOLLIE BOSWORTH Artist statement My porcelain work evolves intuitively from explorations of the material and the making processes. My passion for the inherent visual and tactile qualities of porcelain guides the development my work. Porcelains unique qualities of fineness, density, whiteness, purity and translucency are explored in a variety of forms. Porcelain is a daunting material to use and control and I have explored its limits of tolerance in search of maximum translucency. My making methods include wheel throwing, hand building and working with fine slabs. The fine grain and purity demand a precise treatment with attention to detail often resulting in working on an intimate scale. Textures and patterns in nature influence my work often drawn from my love of gardening and the tropical environment in which I live. Working with soluble metallic salts has been an ongoing investigation in my arts practice. I ‘m particularly drawn to pieces that develop colour and pattern on both sides and show translucency. Translucency is another quality of the material that I have explored in my work. Forms are pushed to the limits of thinness and firing temperature to increase the qualities of luminosity and fragility. The quality of luminosity and the play of pattern and light between interior and exterior are often concerns of this work.

Mollie Bosworth Blushed Blues 2017 porcelain 15 x 29 x 29cm

ELIZABETH CHARLES Artist Statement My work continues to be informed and shaped by a sense of history – particularly the long and rich history of ceramics from ancient times. I have been drawn to ceramics where there is a duality at play; where form and surface combine to create new forms particularly those with animal imagery – the zoomorphic. The abstract forms of West African art and the textured forms of Asian shrines and temples also inform my work. In this series my vessels are predominantly closed and sealed to represent a reservoir, or well but they are not empty; they include a sense of place and the living earth. Inhabiting, sprouting and growing from the well are the characteristics of fauna and flora: birds, bones, vines, leaves and pine trees. They are symbols of the individual spirit; life force; the passage of time; immortality and they reference personal experience, time and the environment in which I live. This series is both personal memorial and a repository of relics; a homage and celebration of the power and beauty of my world; the natural world that we all inhabit; and the invisible and spiritual world. Elizabeth Charles Elmwood Relic 2015 slips, dry glaze on porcelain 62.5 x 26 x 10.5cm Photographed by Greg Piper Imaging

SARIT COHEN Artist Statement I feel very much rooted in ceramic history and I am very devoted to and dependent on my material and love the physical part of the whole process with clay and firing. Through my years with clay I have work in a language inspirited by architectural forms, I have gained endless amount of inspiration on travel the simplicity of other cultures’ art forms and yet its complexity. The beauty and simplicity draws you in with ancient forms. Fine delicate porcelain clay, form that draws your eye around and a further sense of mischief can be seen as I explore the many ways in which the “handles” can reinforce the linear rhythm of the form or subvert its practicality, along with the interface that my work has with found objects. In the past two years I have begun developing a new visual language that investigates themes of cross-cultural pollination by combining handmade ceramic elements with acquired metal, glass or plastic forms. The resulting work seeks to achieve visual harmony and balance between the old and the new. Sarit Cohen Tableaux 7 2016 porcelain slip cast with found objects - 4 cups 20 x 50 x 23cm

ANNE DELANEY Artist Statement My sculptural practice is strongly influenced by natural biomorphic forms - bones, skeletons, insects, shells, waves, etc. I try to create unusual and inspiring forms that explore the divide between objects that might occur naturally in the environment and those that are human made, between the alien and otherworldly, and that which is ancient and familiar. My forms are also usually ambiguous - they could be internal skeletons, exterior carapaces, or nests that give birth to unusual creatures. Alternatively they might be bones, or ghosts. The Bone Spiral series began with a study of discarded bones weathered by the sea and over time, but the works quickly found their own reality as I pushed beyond a literal illustration to simply invoke the essence of bones. Like bones washed up on the seashore that have been smoothed by wind and water over time, I sand and file these works to simulate the weathering process. This process means I have to traverse a fine line; I want the works to appear fragile and graceful, but they have to be structurally sound to have any chance of lasting.

Anne Delaney Leaping bone spiral 2017 white stoneware clay edition 9 of 12 11 x 21 x 10cm

MIMI DENNETT Artist Statement Intuition the ability to understand something instinctively, without the need for conscious reasoning. After losing something precious in 2016, I made one clay shape every day for a year. I would sit down at my work table and empty my mind of all conscious thought. Here are a fraction of the 365 pieces I made.

Mimi Dennett Intuition 2016-2017 Irish scarva clay, blackbutt + anodised copper wire 70 x 120 x 10cm

MERRAN ESSON (courtesy Stella Downer Fine Art) Artist Statement Merran Esson’s ceramics express the contrast between the extremes of country and city. Influences from her rural childhood in the Upper Murray of NSW combine with the urban confines of city life to produce large containers connecting in ways that explore mutual survival. Objects in outdoor spaces have for many years interested Esson, sitting as reminders of water tanks and silos in the Australian rural landscape. Working with clay as a material that can mimic a metal surface, in particular corrugated iron as used in Australian bush architecture, Merran Esson investigates a range of cultural influences, reminding us of the influence of history. Kimbriki Corrugation references 2 old and bashed up water tanks in Kimbriki Tip near Terrey Hills in the Northern Beaches of Sydney. Only half an hour from the Sydney CBD, many local residents are not connected to town water so there is evidence of how folk manage the collection and storage of rainwater. The hinterland behind Mona Vale is littered with water tanks in semi rural back yards.

Merran Esson Kimbriki Corrugation 2015 ceramics 75 x 41 x 39cm

TODD FULLER Artist Statement Roadtrip to armageddon, what will you bring along?

Todd Fuller Untitled 2015 thread, rusted copper and bronze on white earthenware 27 x 7 x 12.5cm

SIMONE FRASER (courtesy of Sabbia Gallery) Artist Statement The ever-present idea of the vessel and its long ceramic tradition has made it easy for me to start a dialogue with the viewer from some common ground. The vessel for me is not so much a clay substrate as a centrifugal form; a spiralling line, unravelling within and without the centre point of a circle. I see it as extending unceasingly in a timeline or story. It wraps itself around the form, unfolding its embossed narrative. This spiralling forges new boundaries, and in its wake leaves a life story of kinks and notches. Each expansion of the line allows for a larger concentric ring to form and give structure to the vessel. It depicts our instinct to hold within the material world a connection to the esoteric world of nature. The collision of references in my work: the archaeological, the environmental, the contemporary, meld together to produce a personal timeline in clay. This then is my discourse: my dialogue with the viewer. The vessel is a metaphor. It’s a context – a narrative, an unfolding story about our contemporary world while honouring the contribution of history. Simone Fraser Landscrape Series 2016 clay and dry glazes 63 x 27 x 27cm

SZILVIA GYORGY Artist Statement I have been interested in finding new meaning and function through the exploration of deconstruction. My works are essentially inspired by my experiences, and respond to what the qualities of the materials offer. This body of work originates from my own difficulties with walking stairs, both literally and metaphorically, this experience led me to play with gravity in my porcelain works. Working with materials like porcelain offers harsh physical rules, and give me the limit that in turn gives form to ideas that are limitless. I use smooth white porcelain clay, which is formed traditionally on a potter’s wheel. The forms are sliced and then rearranged prior to high temperature firing. Their success is often determined due to the skills of understanding the fine balance of weight. A lot of change happens inside the kiln due to the pyroplasticity of the porcelain. I find endless fascination in the dualities of life; positive-negative, stillness-motion, upside-downside, inside-outside, light-shadow. I am specially drawn to the overlap between art, sculpture and it’s residual function as design. Light’ is an unlimited raw material and offers endlessly rich pallet of colours. Szilvia Gyorgy The Upside Downs 2017 porcelain, electric light fittings dimensions variable

SHAUN HAYES Artist Statement The shape of my vase is influenced by a classical Greco-Roman urn form and encrusted with an assortment of various slip cast toy parts. Exploring the idea of mass produced items such as plastic toys, turning them from throw away easily produced items into elegant works of art. At the same time referencing and combining the vast history of ceramics being associated with Greek and Roman classical forms. Combining objects which hold significant reference to cultural history and the past and combining them with contemporary objects. Creating work responding to this blend of past and present, adored and discarded, and exploring how these items can be used to create my own version of contemporary ceramics.

Shaun Hayes Baby Baby Ohh 2017 glazed stoneware 45 x 35 x 35cm

MELINDA LE GUAY Artist Statement The pieces were made at the Royal Doulton Studio in Chatswood, where I worked as an Artist Potter with Derek Smith, from 1973 to 1976, producing hand-thrown domestic ware, privately commissioned, and individual exhibition pieces.

Melinda Le Guay Untitled c 1976 ceramic 7.5 x 10.5 x 10cm

DAI LI Artist Statement I find waiting rooms interesting. They are like gathering places for strangers, each with different motives, emotions and moods, either excitement and/or trepidation of an unknown future. However they also share something in common, “waiting�. A place for a pause and reflection before next steps.

Dai Li Waiting Room No.11 and Waiting Room No.13 2017 stoneware 30 x 9 x 10cm

RUTH LI Artist Statement In my work, I explore different ways of narrating both traditional and multicultural concepts of Beauty, transcendence and the sublime as a cross-cultural language in to the spiritual. Building on this fascination, I draw inspiration from the myriad influences of my diverse cultural heritage, both philosophically and aesthetically; while utilizing the collective language of dreams, myths and of utopia to further nourish the awareness of the continual evolution of life, death and time itself. This layering of imagery becomes a metaphorical representation of the self extending onwards to consider the transitory nature of human existence.

Ruth Li Self Portrait I 2017 Jingdezhen porcelain 13 x 9 x 2cm

HELEN MUELLER + JAN DOWNES Artist Statement In the early ‘70’s we didn’t know each other, but we both knew a man called Caspar. He was impetuous, adventurous, reckless and kind; he was a friend to us both. Caspar came to Australia from Switzerland and eventually returned there. He piloted balloons. He died tragically on 3 August 1980 when his vessel plunged into a swollen river and was dragged into power lines. He’s body disappeared into the torrent and wasn’t found until 18 April 1981. Years later we met and discovered our long ago friendship with Caspar. We discovered too our love of art, and how we’d both come to it mid-life. We get together now from time to time. We chat, sometimes about art, sometimes about Caspar, how wild he was, how tragic his death, how he became a catalyst for our friendship and more recently how we would like to remember him together in a work of art. So this piece came about. Losing you Finding friendship in the filaments of friendship spun by another we once knew Gone now, the memories linger in our stories of him, forever young and reckless Held now in the vessels of our making Finding, each of us, our place to slow him

Helen Mueller + Jan Downes Losing You 2017 porcelain + screenprint 5 x 8.5 x 8.5cm

CAROL MURPHY Artist Statement Woman fashioned from a bone? With just enough detail to suggest being feminine & reference to the Early Moderns.

Carol Murphy Small white bone woman 2017 terracotta - 2 pieces 26.5 x 33 x 15cm

JENNY ORCHARD Artist Statement Art is a platform for asking fundamental questions and posing urgent ideas with freedom, and from the heart. Including all life forms within our sphere of empathy, compassion and responsibility I believe is a worthy aspiration. Celebrating a transnational solidarity, a diasporic and also ongoing global cultural identity the creatures I create exist in a parallel place where they create their own logical and operational infrastructures in the Hidden Suburbs of my imagination. They are the forgotten cast-offs and abandoned errors of genetic modification experimentation and research, and they come from a nowhere, the accident of their existence does not give them a place. I allegorise a personal, but also perhaps universal shift in the concept of destiny via biology, (gender and ethnicity or race) evolution and place. The fundamental change in the understanding of what is possible, and the possibilities of the natural has become necessary since the advent of epigenetics, biotechnology and the global economy. Creating spaces where communities thrive outside of normally accepted paradigms begins with their imaginative conception. The work of culture, taking up discourses of the present and their connections with past is a meaningful, mindful and prolonged discussion. As part of that discussion I think about the planets plight as one big picture, and that it is the work of both scientists and artists to heal our environmental destruction and bring to an end our wars. And so politicians and CEO’s need be doing this too, with imagination and love. My job is to light a spark of possibility and desire anywhere I can. Jenny Orchard MangroveMan 2017 earthernware, glazes and on-glazes 75 x 40 x 37cm

MADELEINE PRESTON Artist Statement I work with archival materials including photos, everyday objects and paintings to create installations that suggest alternative histories. The installations use temporary display conventions such as shop-front signage, posters, mock social media pages and projections along with more traditional display methods and media such as painting and ceramics.

Madeleine Preston Little Deaths 2016 terracotta, augmented glaze on ironstone slip, multiple firings dimensions variable

LIANE ROSSLER (courtesy Annette Larkin Fine Art) Artist Statement Made from Australian stoneware embedded with fine grained igneous volcanic rock, these works are created in a direct process from earth to form expressing the natural qualities of the material. The work is designed as an interior landscape and a simple earthy contemplation. Created in Sydney, the power used in production of this work has been offset with the Sweet Nature planting program. The work is stamped with a Makers Mark ‘8’ as a symbol of never ending happiness. Liane is an artist, designer, curator and creative advisor. Her work is focused on clever and beautiful sustainable design practice, with an emphasis on community, environmental and creative cultural engagement.

Liane Rossler Stone Landscape 2017 stoneware 10 x 30 x 30cm and 18 x 24 x 24cm

AVITAL SHEFFER Artist Statement Notions of fecundity and containment intrinsic to the human form and the natural world animate the making of my ceramic vessels. The embodiment of utility, divinity and beauty in the vessel form is as ancient as the existence of human consciousness. Projected through mythology, language and lived experience, it is an endless source of inspiration, questioning and search. I am engaged in a deeply rewarding process of oscillating in history. Every layer of clay, glaze and print applied, concealing and revealing, moving back yet simultaneously forward in time.

Avital Sheffer Aldaba III and Sentinel VII 2017 clay, glazes 59 x 39 x 19cm and 65 x 23 x 16cm

RICHARD SPOEHR (courtesy Stella Downer Fine Art) Artist Statement A life time of visual and sensual experience connects through the hands to the most pliable, responsive and natural of materials, clay. As technical expertise and understanding develop, so does engagement with the mind. Just as in a performance, the objects created have the power to envelop, to move, and to change lives. Here, however, rather than for an ephemeral moment, results stand permanently and offer ongoing promises.

Richard Spoehr Ritual 2017 southern ice porcelain dimensions variable

PETER TILLEY Artist Statement The ceramic shards in this work were found on a section the waters edge of Port Phillip Bay at Williamstown. The area is at the month of the Yarra River known locally as Shelly Beach and known to me since childhood, not as a beach but a place to fossick. The site was a rubbish dump in the 1800’s, I’m not sure when the dumping ceased but all that has escaped the ravages of time and tide is a range of blue and white china and salt glazed stoneware shards plus the occasional bottle neck. The companion piece to this work utilises blue and white shards from the same source, it won the Maitland Art Prize in 1992 and is now in the collection of the Maitland Regional Art Gallery.

Peter Tilley Pot Shard Compartments 1991/1995 ceramic shards, reclaimed timber 68 x 89 x 6.5cm


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Ceramic Revisions II  

Pots, tiles and clay figurines have taught us fascinating details about ancient societies and "Ceramics Revisions II" conveys how artists in...