A study in Monochrome and Neutrals.

A study in neutrals & monochrome.

My last commission for 2019.

The brief for this ceramic wall installation design ….was that each form be individual, difference in scale, design and colour were requested, with a neutral and monochrome palette.

The possible mounting ideas of these pieces is endless, some can be nested together, forms can be grouped according to colour, size and texture.

Mounted forms can create a strong visual tension by placing contrasting forms together.

Or a more harmonious display by placing like forms.

It’s a study in playful possibilities.

A study in neutrals & monochrome
A study in neutrals & monochrome
A study in neutrals & monochrome

2019 in nine images from Instagram

Looking back over another year, captured and documented on Instagram.

These nine images highlight works of importance to me….they depict the highs and lows of an all consuming ceramics practice.

1 Flower Vessel. -Stoneware torus vessel with porcelain relief decoration.

Made as part of a collection of works for the ‘Australian Ceramics Triennale’ in May this year, for the Endemic Earth Exhibition. It was the first time I had been invited to exhibit my work since my return to clay 6years ago. I had developed a decoration technique to emulate the British Jasperware surface, I really wanted to have these pieces represent me at the Triennale. This involved the banksia flower and leaves, applied in fine slabs to the stoneware surface and carved back…..sadly for this piece, the porcelain lifted in parts and fell off. It could of been amazing but that’s clay for you! All that time, effort, $$$ can easily come to naught. I lost many other pieces to cracking etc but I persisted and was eventually rewarded. (See pic 5)

2 Ceramic Tassel. -Stoneware form with tassel.

This was a private commission for a fellow maker. It was the third form I made, as each form cracked in the kiln. This one sadly cracked too but only a surface crack, not structural. So I added a gold mend to highlight and honour that not all ceramics is perfect. Just perfect intention. Luckily the fourth try was the winner, for the commission.

3 Ceramic Installation. -midfire/high fired stoneware with porcelain slip decoration.

A private commission and my second attempt at creating a ceramic wall installation. This work has both midfire and high fired stoneware with porcelain slip decoration. This installation has the first big donut I had ever thrown, using 4kg of clay. It also features a contained and plaited tassel. I launched the hashtag, #makeceramicstheartintheroom.

4 ‘Banksiere’ -stoneware vessel with cobalt blue line work.

Made to hold the Banksia tree branches like a tulipiere was designed to hold tulips. This vessel was created from 8 wheelthrown composite parts, with cobalt linework that dances and flows all over the form. The piece was submitted to a major Craft Award. It was unsuccessful. It now lives happily in my lounge room hosting any flower that needs sustenance. Waiting for a new opportunity to be seen. Learning to accept rejection is tough but it’s not always a reflection on the work. It’s often subjective……about timing, curation, policy and agenda. I Just keep moving forward, keep showing up. The key is to find advocates for your work.

5 Endemic Earth- stoneware vessel with porcelain relief decoration

This work was shown in the Endemic Earth exhibition at the Australian Ceramics Triennale. It was purchased and now remains in Tasmania, in a private collection. The porcelain relief decoration is of the ‘celery top pine leaf’ endemic to Tasmania. I hope to revisit this work in 2020. This work gave me the motivation to create from the heart.

6 ‘Native Sprig’ -stoneware vessel with porcelain relief decoration.

I created this work as an entry to another major ceramics award. It didn’t make it as a finalist. I was disappointed initially ….on reflection, I then worked on how I could represent my idea another way? (See below)

7 ‘I walk the line’- a pair of stoneware vessels with porcelain relief decoration and cobalt blue line work.

This vessel was created to accompany ‘Native Sprig’ and the pair became ‘I walk the line’. These vessels were accepted as finalist into the Clunes Ceramic Award. They were then acquired by the Art Gallery of Ballarat. A highlight for 2019 and my ceramics practice so far. I’m convinced quoting Johnny Cash in my application got me over the line! (Quite literally)

8 ‘Dolly’- stoneware sculptural form.

This vessel came out of the blue, I set out to throw a familiar form and out came a bottle. It made sense to throw a small porcelain head and a slim torus form for arms. I adore doll forms and collect wooden dolls, so maybe it was inevitable. I had submitted this work into a sculpture award……but no dice. I then proposed her like for an exhibition idea also for 2020, as a collection of dolls, like a dollhouse? No deal on that either! So I’ll keep trying, there’s value in this idea and in her. She’s beautiful.

9 Ceramic Wall Sculpture- black midfire with porcelain.

Nesting torus forms with porcelain line inlay. This is a direction I hope to work through in 2020. No tassel, just sculptural forms, monochrome, simple. My throwing game has to be on point to get this effortless look. I’m up for that!

So roll on 2020, I’m ready for the highs, lows and inbetweens…..but mostly the unexpected.

Contrast and Connection- Tassel.

A union between the hard and the soft, static and movement, life and stillness.

More than its studio pottery beginnings of wheelthrown composite forms.

More than its simple textile technique of hand dyeing cotton.

More than just a decorative piece, though making Art for the context of the home shouldn’t be scoffed at.

More than the final design solution of creating an over sized tassel with a ceramic top & end cap!

More than the unique idea or thinking it took to conceive it.

It’s Art.

Art, with craft roots.

Dolly

Dolly is a ceramic sculpture, made from wheelthrown components in stoneware and porcelain.

Her surface of relief decoration has been carved and painted in porcelain slip.

She embodies the feminine, the sacred, like a fertility goddess from Neolithic times.

She is contemporary, a modern woman of our times.

Her voice is quiet but resonates.

Her presence is still, there is strength in her stance.

She is Dolly.

Dolly, 2019

The White Collection. Oct 2019

…..a recent commission for a client in the U.S.

Each stoneware component is wheelthrown and decorated with white porcelain slip.

Decorative details in dot relief sculpture, spikes, links and line.

Handmade tassels created using cotton, linen and recycled cotton fibres.

Stoneware torus form with link detail.

Spikey form with white porcelain slip.

I Walk The Line 2019

Finalist in the Clunes Ceramic Award 2019.

Acquired by the Art Gallery of Ballarat.

I keep a close watch on this heart of mine
I keep my eyes wide open all the time
I keep the ends out for the tie that binds
Because you’re mine, I walk the line

Creating ‘Flower Vessels’ are apart of an ongoing investigation into the influence of my natural environment, on my ceramics practice.
The Coastal Banksia and Tea tree are endemic to where I live and they have captivated and grounded me and formed my sense of place in this world.

‘I Walk The Line‘ are a pair of contrasting, wheel-thrown composite forms, made in stoneware.
One has relief decoration, reminiscent of Wedgwood Jasperware. Each porcelain Banksia Sprig has been individually applied to the stoneware surface and hand carved in situ.

The other with porcelain slip and cobalt, the surface of swirling, freeform line work is a visual link to the coastal tea tree
The use of unglazed high fired stoneware and porcelain together creates a dramatic contrast to the work.

The forms are quiet and contemplative, engaging the viewer to look closer.
These modernist inspired, womb-like flower vessels, each hold a Coastal Banksia branch as observed on a tree. 
This is a key element to the design of the vessels. 
Both are also a reinterpretation and connection to my British and Anglo Indian heritage and their ceramic traditions.

 

‘Banksiere’ 2019

‘Banksiere’ is a wheel-thrown composite form, made in stoneware.

It was created to hold and sustain five Coastal Banksia branches from its spouts.
The Coastal Banksia is endemic to where I live and it has captivated me.
It has been decorated with white porcelain slip and cobalt.
The surface of swirling, freeform line work is a visual link to the coastal tea tree found in the same area.
This vessel is part of an ongoing investigation, into the influence, of my natural surroundings on my ceramics practice.

This vessel is a reinterpretation of the ‘blue and white’ ceramic tradition. A connection to my British and Anglo Indian heritage.
My Banksiere is a contemporary vessel to reconnect the past with the present.
It’s form is based on the Tulipiere.

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The Australian Triennale May 1-4 , Hobart, Tasmania.

When the Triennale was announced in 2017, I knew I wanted to attend.

I bought an early bird ticket and never dreamed I’d be in the position in my clay career to exhibit. I just wanted to be there.

Now it’s 7 days to go and I’m showing my works in two exhibitions spaces.

Very grateful for this opportunity.

‘Vignettes’ 24hr, Window Display.

Hunter St, Sullivan’s Cove, Hobart.

University of Tasmania School of Creative Arts & Media.

These ‘Ceramic Tassels’ hanging sculptures are the culmination of a study of traditional wheel work and a passion for textiles.

There a union of materials, that connects the hard with the soft, the malleable and yielding with the intractable and rigid.

A harmonious outcome, when these two materials are in accordance, is a beautiful thing.

The tassels are made from gritty stoneware, porcelain, linen, silk, paper and cotton.

Endemic Earth’

Kingborough Community Hub, Kingston, Hobart, Tasmania.

I said to my lecturer once….I just want to make beautiful things.

He agreed, pots are beautiful things.

My works for ‘Endemic Earth’ responds to our native flora as adornments, decorations to embellish my wheel thrown vessels.

Taking cues from their colour, forms, texture and structures, and more specifically the leaf of the ‘Celery Top Pine’ indigenous to Tasmania, I seek to highlight the beauty of our natural world in a unique and contemporary way.

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Flower Vessels 2018

A collection of flower Vessels created on the wheel in stoneware and porcelain.

Each vessel is a composite form using torus forms (clay donut) and bowl/plinth forms.

A series of holes suitable for ikebana style floral displays.

Decorated with a green slip engobe.

A vessel inspired by organic forms made to showcase and nurture flowers.

 

Ceramic Tassel

Working through an idea from the past but in a new way with a wheel thrown double walled form.

Combining fibre and ceramic to make a simple, modernist tassel.

An elegant, elongated form.