PLAY WITH PORCELAIN

Within this project I was looking into the idea of breaking down the perceived boundaries within the white cube through the use of ceramics to create socially engaged artwork. My aim throughout this project was to facilitate the exploration of the audience’s imagination through creating and playing games with ceramics. 

During the making process I worked with a number of focus groups to test ideas in a workshop context working with clay to create different designs to get their opinions, allowing me to actively maintain the work in the socially engaged realm. I volunteer with young people facilitating workshops and feel that working with a group has helped me to create something that will hopefully work in a number of different situations and appeal to as many people as possible to begin to break down the perceived boundaries within the ‘white cube’.

I found a huge amount of inspiration from Emma Lacey’s work from her Everyday range where each piece featured a small dent in the surface. It was one of the first pieces I researched and really resonated with me throughout the rest of the project. The small dents allow the audience to see the true nature of the clay as well as a small connection to the artist. The idea of distorting my work by hand really interested me and developed into an interest in the haptic as it fed into my work.

My objective through this project was to create beautifully broken pieces, which have been distorted during the making and firing process. They have also been distorted further through the serendipitous process of glazing to show the scars of the artwork. I hoped this would encourage the audience to begin to question aesthetics within art and society and think about why they instinctively gravitate to some pieces over others.

As I write this I am not going to know what the audience are going to bring to the work as they interact with the piece and fill in the instruction book. But I will use this opportunity to gather more information and develop the work further in the future.