Over the last 18 months I have been developing a new ceramic idiom: panels which relate to the vast tradition of Australian landscape and whose form was partly inspired by oriental folding screens. My first inspiration was the landscape close to where I live – the volcanic basin around Mount Warning (Wollumbin) and the mountain itself.
My recent visit to Stanthorpe and Girraween National Park was brief. It did however, produce an excitement and numerous digital images, two ingredients for a sustained bout of studio time. Granite in its myriad forms, produced by aeons of weathering and revealed by the scrubby vegetation with its muted greens, takes a central place in this show. Ironically granite is the primary source of clay and some glaze materials. What also enchants me is the soft play of the horizon and as a 3D subject, the sheer shapes of shards.
My awe endures at weathered terrain of Girraween especially in contrast to the verdant rainforest environment closer to the coast where I live.
Translating the landscape into ceramic form called on a variety of my skills including photography, computer compilation and drawing. The landscape panels are surfaced with classical oriental glazes and fired in my gas kiln. Most of the 3D pieces in this show are wood-fired, in this case producing richer earthy tones and textured surface.
I normally like to use local clays in my work . In this case, restrained by logistics, I carried home only a bucket of the local white clay which helped constitute the surfacing of the rock faces in the landscapes.
With this work I trust I have made a contribution to the culture of Stanthorpe and its surrounds.