Wednesday, July 11, 2012

From the vault: ceramic sculpture 2001

So this is the last bit of old work that was photographed in May by Curtis Hildebrand- ceramic sculptures from my Emily Carr grad.  The last year I was at Art school I decided to let go of functional ceramics to pursue painting and sculpture in a stronger way. 

My paintings at the time were approached very fresh and intuitively- I would make a wack load of canvases, choose about 2-3 colours plus black and white and then would just paint, without a lot of planning.  Over the course of several canvases, ideas would emerge in the form of shape, line, foreground and background, with marks that referenced the process by which I had painted them.  These circular organic shapes were part of this swirl of a thick brush that came back around- the motion of my hand twisting the paint around in a circle.  This circular motion for me became meaningful, eventually working it's way into the concept of connection- the connections between people, of friends, random connections and encounters on the street with people I had known.

With the significance of this idea of connection creating meaning within these abstract paintings, I decided to make these ceramic sculptures that pulled these shapes into the 3 dimensional realm.  Using a wooden template that I had cut out with a skill saw I made these slump molds that fresh slabs of a black clay body were stretched across.  This method creates volume as you flip around the template and create a slab using the other side (put to sides together and you have a pod-like shape).  Instead of using glaze- I left these pods un-glazed but burnished stripes in them, playing with the subtle glossy and matt reflected in the paintings.   For my final grad piece I hung it all on the wall together, playing around with how the paintings were connecting to each other and the sculpture was connecting to the painting.

In that cyclical way ideas come around, these shapes re-emerged in my early dahlhaus work (and then morphed into to the poppy design). 

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