APRIL 3 – APRIL 27 FINAL DAY – MONDAY JUNE 8
KWIRAK CHOUNG, MICHAEL CONOLAN, ANNA CULLITON, LISE EDWARDS, ANNE EDWARDS, SUSIE McMEEKIN, CHESTER NEALIE, SARAH O’SULLIVAN, BILL SAMUELS, LINDA SEIFFERT, REBECCA VERPOORTEN LAWS and emerging artists EBONY SALAMA
A group exhibition showcasing a collection of masters in their field in this dynamic and thought provoking show.
Hands on Clay and GANG GANG gallery are proud supporters of Clay Gulgong
“I would like to think that clay objects at their best, whether understated or strongly expressed, illustrate a harmonized interplay, between surface texture, colour, form and interestingly enough, the makers perception.”
The work exhibits a balance between narrative and reflective contemplative ideas.
The chuns are used to reflect something of the old tectonic forces, the melting and flowing of rocks from our planet’s pre-histories which are evident in the deep ravines and cliffs of the Kowmung River chasms. These landscapes seemed to accept our walking tours of the Kanimbla – Boyd National Park, offering a sense of ‘all will be well’ even when we might have become stuck amid those beetling cliffs and sliding shale screes and fogs and red cedars, and scary cave systems, and river oaks by quiet pools. All that humbling beauty.
Anna is a ceramicist working in the Kanimbla Valley of NSW.
A love of animals and nature is integral to her work, with many different styles, specialising in “funk” ceramics. She has exhibited regularly since the mid 2000’s and in 2015 was a finalist in The Muswellbrook Art Prize, National Portrait Gallery 2016.
“Women who play with fire” – is ultimately the autobiography of an imperfect woman turning 60 and considering her life decisions, and experience, relationships, health and concepts of beauty and ageing.
Clay is my medium and wood is my fuel in the kilns I built at Hampton.
I’m not interested in what I know can happen but rather using found and scrounged materials to see what I can make of them. The same mold was used for each of the 60 pieces that make up the entire installation.
I fire alone so I can experiment without interference and the only limitations are my own.
Susie is a potter of 42 years’ experience. She is based in Katoomba in the Blue Mountains. There she and her husband have built a home raised a family.
Susies’ work is quiet and simple. It is based on two strong cultures that of Asia and the UK. She is enamored with the Chinese Sung dynasty glazes and the simplicity of shape. Her Teadust glaze is taken from the Korean tradition as is the white glaze that she uses. Some shapes are West Country English and that comes from her training with her father Ivan McMeekin who trained in Cornwall with Michael Cardew a well-known and respected potter from post war UK. There was a strong ethic taught of using the materials that are around your workshop which she tries hard to adhere to. The glazes she uses are sourced from an area within 100 kilometers from her home and she processes all these materials in her workshop so these glazes come from raw rock to the beauty you see before you. In the past three years she has built a new workshop and recently completed the building of her wood fire kiln which will be fired for the first time in April next year.
Susie is represented in Regional Galleries and in many private collections both here and internationally. In 2018 she represented Australia in China at the Belt and Road Celadon Conference in Ningbo a city close to Shanghai where her work was enthusiastically received
Nealie is a New Zealand potter working in Australia. He began potting in New Zealand in 1964 after being inspired by visiting potters Shoji Hamada, Takeichi Kawai and Michael Cardew and has since maintained a continuous potting practice for over 50 years. He built his first wood-fired anagama kin at South Kiapara Head, NZ, in 1978 after seeing woodfiring in Shigaraki and Bizen during his sponsored visit, in company with Len Castle, to the World Crafts Conference in Kyoto, Japan. Since that time Chester has lectured, built kilns and conducted many firings in New Zealand, Australia, Japan, USA, Korea, Norway, China and France. Nealie began exhibiting in 1965 and from 1975 has responded to invitations to exhibit, lecture and give workshops overseas. He has exhibited widely in solo and group shows both in Australasia and other countries. He also initiated and curated a number of exhibitions and events in New Zealand and overseas.
Nealie relocated from New Zealand to Australia in 1991. While working from his studio at Goanna Ridge, Gulgong, where he has three woodfiring kilns, Nealie continues to demonstrate and exhibit on a regular basis.
He is represented in many public and private collections in New Zealand and around the world, been published in numerous books, received many awards for his works and is a member of the New Zealand Society of Potter and the Auckland Studio Potters.
Compelled by the physical and metaphysical (metaphor) language of nature – my practice explores the infinitely evolving visual expressions, of patterns and structures throughout Natures organic processes. The mystery of nature excites me, exploring the realms where physical matter is infused with the unquantifiable substance of spirit, and where spirit can breathe and pulse in the densest most inert form of matter. I aspire to embody in the hand formed, abstract organic, clay sculpture – the sense of mystery, sanctuary, diversity and dynamism that I experience as the spirit of Nature.
As an artist working primarily with clay and the ceramic process, I inherit the legacy of an artform which has held a space, telling stories of earth and culture through millennia. “The vessel”; the archetypal ceramic container, remains as important now as ever, as do the methods of creating with clay. Within and outside of the vessel there is the infinite world of potential expression in clay.
My recent body of work explores “breaking the boundaries” of the “vessel”. Challenging conventions, evolving ceramic traditions and inspiring fresh audience perceptions and understandings of this art form. The work Undulatus resides “off the plinth”. The sequential wavy modules emerge from the ground, forming a sculptural environment. As the sculpture interfaces directly with the surfaces of the gallery space, a dialogue has been introduced which allows the audience to share the space with the sculpture, to feel the physical impact of the work, and to navigate their way as they would through a living landscape. This work is the latest expression of a body of work which ponders the place of humanity within the natural universe; reflecting on our relationship with nature in all its forms. As an innate part of nature we exist inarguably within an earthly and cosmic ecosystem, yet the prevailing condition of our modern lives is an unreconciled, alternating experience of belonging and separation that leaves us searching for meaning, connection and wholeness. The transitional zones between the man made & natural world can be like a bridge between dimensions.
“….In my own way it exemplifies my approach to the creative process – realizing a whole new technique then solving the problems as they emerge. The idea also evolved out of my approach to ceramic materials in general. While I lean heavily on the traditional approach to ceramics I have deliberately chosen to find and use my own materials rather than commercially prepared ones. THe beauty of some of the old pots from cultures that have a long ceramic history (unlike Oz that has none) has intrigued me for the last 50 odd years. I believe their beauty resulted from the potters use of “materials at hand” and their “primitive” methods of preparation. I don’t mind being called a nutter by my colleagues because I enjoy the chase, the research is endless and it’s what keeps me going, albeit at an increasingly slower pace.”
I use clay to tell stories. My heart and hands love to touch clay. I feel that I need clay like the air I breathe.
This work is a collection of decorative narrative pieces that play with the idea of decorative and function. I see the work as lustrous illustrations straight from the heart. The work explores the recent Bush fires, evacuation, regeneration and life in the Blue Mountains. Other themes depicted, the impact of illness, heartache and breakdown of things we hold closest to us. Decay, love and loss and nostalgia. The vintage references evoke a sentimental yearning for return to a past period or irrecoverable condition. A longing to hold onto love and the pain and inevitability of loss, and the moments of beauty that are found and embedded in-between.
All events are framed within in creation and my belief and eternal hope that there is so much more to heaven and earth.
EBONY SALAMA – emerging artist
My work borrows from the romantic ideals of union with the natural world and the connection we as humans share with the creatures that walk alongside us. This work depicts the battle scarred Mercenary flaunting wounds upon his face, and the Mother lying exposed with swollen teats but baring no kittens. The cats manifest both the anger and aggression of the dominant male, and the submission and nurturing of the reserved female. Both are common behaviors found in each respective sex of cat, and the animal kingdom as a whole. As such, these pieces are both consciously buying into the stereotypes of traditional gendered roles. It’s up to the viewer to decide whether or not they support the idea or reject it, and if they think of these attributes as a positive or negative force. We like to think ourselves above this behavior, however I’m curious as to how prevalent this nature is in our own species and want to question how far removed we actually are from our primal instincts that we so look down upon.