Thursday, 10 December 2015

Here is Niamh Minogue

RMIT Bachelor of Fine Art
Object based Practice - Ceramics
Graduate exhibition 2015

This student's work really thrilled me. A self confessed lover and user of coiling and pinching, her subtly raised and terra sigillata finished forms really delighted.
Niamh Minogue's graduate work is stunning in its range of ceramic process and her mature approach to colour, texture, form and arrangement.
Dusty Pink installation


Pottery by graduating Holmesglen Students

Alison Frith & Jessica Rae

Guild of Objects

November 2015

Snuck into this show early and Ali & Jess graciously allowed me to poke around.
Very impressive, consolidated work from these young graduates. Both potters work with an earthy palette as is the  current trend and use stoneware clay and glazes.
Jess' pillow vessels are industrial in form but softly domestic in scale with gently curving rims. Tricky making here; joining and inner and an outer form so seamlessly.
Ali really wows with her volcanic glazes. She reigns-in the eruption by containing this bubbling fury to the lids of perfectly restrains cylinders. The lunar-like effects balance harmoniously with her choice of satin glaze. I would love to see some wilder, deeper pits & holes on future work. 

It is devastating to hear that Holmesglen TAFE is closing its course when the diploma turns out talented and energetic potters as these Two.

Alison Frith installing at Guild of Objects first exhibition

Alison Frith

Alison Frith
Alison Frith
Jessica Ray
Jessica Rae

Monday, 23 November 2015

Conditional Archaeology

New Ceramic works by Alanah Wilson

with florals by Phil Hyunh 

Mr Kitly 

November 2015

Wilson lives and works in Sydney and this is her first foray south since graduating from ceramics at the National Art School. This exhibition draws on Mycenaren vessels and Chinese ritual bronzes  as inspiration for her finely-fluted, ancient forms and metal-mimicking thin walls. Wilson's subtle colour range is achieved through layers of colours washes with oxides, slips and glazes.

The exhibition included a collaboration with Phil Hyunh who provided the floral elements.

In her catalogue Wilson writes of flowers serving as ..." 'memento vivere' - a reminder to live - and aim to highlight the importance of the physicality and reality of the present moment whilst acting as an indication of the measurable time and natural decay."

Hyunh's vibrantly-coloured and freshly-cut flowers precariously emerge from Wilson's ancient vessels. I am reminded of tenacity of plants that manage to grow from the smallest crack or fissue in the hardest of built environments. Conditional Archaeology reminds us where there is ruin there is always life as a continuum.

Saturday, 10 October 2015


Fiona Hiscock

October 2015

This is Fiona Hiscock's first solo exhibition with her new gallery, presenting the vessels that are well know and well loved bowls, trays, pitchers, vases, and featuring a spray of wall plaques.

Wednesday, 7 October 2015

Benwell & Halpern

SAM Shepparton Art Museum 

October 2015

The superb 'wall of ceramics' display case at SAM is currently devoted to the work of two Melbourne potters Stephen Benwell & Deborah Halpern.

This duo is a brilliant combination, certainly not the first time they have been displayed together.  These works remain vital and shake off any lingering doubts about West Coast funk, or 80s cringe.

Congrats to SAM for a collection that has depth and longevity. Halpern's later work is represented by a mosaic sculpture. I'd love to see her get her hands muddy again and see what springs forth.

Installation is matched wonderfully with a contemporary wall piece. I wonder who did it?

Tuesday, 6 October 2015

Sidney Myer Fund Australian Ceramic Award

Shepparton Art Museum

Saturday 22 August 2015 to 22 November 2015

Another spontaneous school holiday road trip treat: the Ceramic Award. This year there is barely a vessel in sight.  Really enjoyed and was inspired by the challenge this show set for me. And that is:
how these incredible objects expand the use of material and process.
I don't envy the job of the selectors.

SAM Director Kirsten Paisley said: The five shortlisted artists are exemplary artists, each building and contributing to the use of ceramics as a medium. Their practices span historical cultural themes, revisit modernist concerns, delve into social issues and moreover each challenge our understanding of ceramic art and its positioning within contemporary practice. In this suite of five exhibitions ceramics as a process medium, a collaborative medium collided with other materials and as a material with technical limitations and extraordinary capabilities its own right will be evidenced. I congratulate each of the artists for being shortlisted for the 2015 Australian ceramic art award and look forward to working with them.

The 2015 shortlisted artists are:
Penny Byrne
Ruth Hutchinson
Sanné Mestrom
Adam John Cullen and
Ramesh Mario Nithiyendran who took out the $50,000 prize.

Penny Byrne  Returned, 2015

My work is increasingly focused on riots, public protest, conflict, and more recently with the impact of the individuals of these events. (pb)

Ramesh Mario Nithiyendran Archipelago, 2015

I use the symbol of the phallus as an anchor point to generate discussions around colonialism, religion, creation and the body. (rmn)

 Ruth Hutchinson, Hell Mouth, 2015
' ... references a 12th century drawing by an anonymous artist from an ailuinated manuscript - the Winchester Psalter (c1500). Depicting the mouth of a beast that is represented as a medieval passageway to hell." (wall text)

 Sanne Mestrom, Leftovers, 2015
'...she has drawn on the work of contemporary rather than historical artists, writing a series of letters to those that have had a formative influence on her practice. She identified international 'art heroes' and Australian colleagues, inviting them to contribute a discarded scrap, or residual form from the production of their works, which then became the organising principle for her own.' (wall text)

Clive Murray White's electrical tape

Adam John Cullen, Forever Stuff, 2015

'... Cullen casts the negative forms of vessels gleaned from opportunity shops and roadside inorganic collections, and the items are imbued with plaster, wax and concrete...(c)haracterised by exquisite textures and punctuated with coloured oxide powders, orbs, spheres and urns can also reveal layers of furniture, textiles and linoleum, or shards of ceramic plates.' (wall text)

It's an archaelogical dig, except the materials are not the remains of a past civilisation; they are the objects of my immediate surroundings, in a way they can be seen as a material history of the current day.' (ajc)


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