Monday, July 13, 2009

White Heat....

is something Im dreaming of at the moment!! Heat that seeps through you and makes your whole body comfortable and relaxed!! {as you can tell I love love love summer}... Winter I must admit is not my favourite season - and at this time of the year Im usually trying to find a nice chair with which to hibernate in my lovely cat instinctually does!! Procuring a nice hot coffee is also an important tool I use with which to see out these cold days!!

But actually the White Heat that Im talking about here is the Manly Art Gallery's ceramic exhibition which is on as part of the Ceramic Triennale, ending on the 19 July... I went to see it a couple of weeks ago - before the ceramic explosion of this week which requires alot of stamina and a big map of the city with which to see all the exhibitions on the triennale schedule! Some excited conference folk arrived last weekend so as to get a head start on all the festivities and I do believe that was my strategy when I went out to Manly...

Dr Julie Batholomew curated White Heat which 'showcases 25 ceramic artists, emerging and established, who share a respect for clay, as a medium of expression, creating edgy objects that seduce with their materiality and challenge through the ideas they explore'. Each artist in their modest way tries to tackle quite huge themes such as the destruction of the natural world through pesticide use (Gerry Wedd seen below)

through to Laura McEwans and Liz Stops collaborative work that explores the detrimental impact of colonial hegemony!

All this sounds extremely heady but when looking at the works on view, the tactile nature of the ceramic medium lets the viewer enjoy and marvel at the works on their technical and aesthetic merits.... It is a huge exhibition taking two rooms and it is a true reflection of the amazing contemporary ceramic work that is out there within Australia! I was blown away and really enjoyed taking in all the ideas that were being creatively expressed, and then trying to work out how they made them!! It is an alluring medium and one that I am constantly trying to 'figure out'... but it is a true mystery to me...which is something I love!

Below is another image of Gerry's installation Silent Spring 2008 Modelled Porcelain, Various Clay Bodies, Various dimensions.... It was one of my favourite works of thew show as it was so lovingly done, with a true sense of the hand built with some of the birds hand coloured.... It was a beautiful work to begin the exhibition with...

The work below is by Mel Robson called Shot Gun (Positive) 2008 Found Ceramic Plate, water jet cut. I have mentioned Mel's work in a previous entry as her work is also featured in the Pourers show at Object Gallery. This work has a different feel about it and is much more literal but there is something interesting in the idea of a blue+white porcelain plate being transfigured into a shotgun...!

One other favourite was the work of Pru Morrison with Dance of the sugar Plum Fairies 2009 Porcelain Slip cast, hand built, terra sigillata, sgraffito, clear glaze... Such a highly technical work that is so so detailed and yet once you get into the bigger picture - so so funny!! Its a study of the 'political craft of select individuals that form the Federal House of Reps and the Senate as they try to choreograph the deliverance of the 42 billion dollar stimulus package'...So a highly political work and yet she tackles it with our dry Australian humour and wit!! Love it...

So if you're thinking of doing a little ferry ride... head out to Manly before it closes!

One other event that is worth noting down is the opening of Sabbia Gallery's latest exhibition called Conversations. It opens on Wednesday with a talk from the curator Kylie Johnston and a few of the artists that are exhibiting ... The idea behind the show is that represented artists were asked to invite one artist that informs, influences or converses with them/and their work.... Should be a great night ... a good drawing....especially when its on a ceramic backdrop such as this piece from Tania Rollond!
{ps.... thank you to Tanya at Manly Art Gallery for the info + images.... was huge help+much appreciated!}

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

thanks for the white heat feedback , havent seen the manly show yet but looking
foward to it and the city instalation/performance stuff too!