I am moved to speak! This blog has been dormant for a bit but it occurs to me that the EU referendum debate in the UK has made everybody petrified – turned to stone. Inflexible. Afraid. I have noticed how people are more cautious to commit even on a rational level to craft courses as D-Day approaches, fueled by fear.
The ceramic process is one of transformation. We take clay, which was once stone, then we work with it and turn it back into stone, to make our lives better and more memorable. Eventually of course it returns to clay, if, that is, an archaeologist doesn’t find it first, to teach us something new about ourselves.
Culture is what nations are judged on. It is the extant objects of an age – the culture that is left when people are gone – that fascinate us enough to travel and visit other countries and that, in fact, mark them out as noteworthy. Pottery does this so well because it lasts so long. It is one of the only true constants in the history of humanity – slightly bold statement you might say, but nevertheless, one visit to the British Museum or any vibrant town museum will show you that. It works on a human level, rather than one of nationhood. This is the contribution I think it has to the referendum debate.
This is not a pitch for bums on seats for my classes, although that would give me some breathing space as a living crafts person, but it feels like the small investment that people need to make in themselves is being eroded by fear from national and international politics. Could it be that the further politics is away from people’s daily lives the better it is for them? If politics is so emotionally confrontational that we are turned to stone, then we are in trouble!
It feels that this petrification is becoming more and more acute by the day. There needs to be one step further, a push. This is the push, if we are so detached from our emotional micro-climates that we cannot navigate the referendum debate without being turned to stone, we should realise that even stone will turn to clay soon enough and begin again!
Feel free to comment 🙂
Hanging my latest show in Palmers green, north London. My luxury tableware (as also seen on the header image of this blog) is on show! I have already mentioned this in previous posts but it is my first solo show since taking my newborn steps into the world as an artist.
Lots of tiny self-imposed stresses meant I was heartedly relieved to complete the hanging. Putting cups and saucers on the wall seems to be causing quite a stir in their temporary home 🙂
I know lots of the followers here are from overseas but if you are in sunny north London (uk), Palmers Green to be precise, come and see the sight of a complete set of hand-made tableware on the walls!
So this is me clutching one of my new pieces. As you can tell (!) I am very happy with them and am looking forward to developing them over the next few months. They will be launched at the 573degrees stand at TENT London in September. Gorgeous images of pots to come of course but a sneak preview at http://573degrees.com/designers/sarah-core/
“The others dealt with the subject, ’bodies’ of humans or other living beings in varied categorisations, mainly concentrating on those marginalised in our societies, which has become one of the widely held subjects of the representation in Postmodern art.”
The origin of my shape is an unguentarium: a vessel for ointment. For what purpose? The ritual object – a vessel for containing nourishing fluids and for preserving a lubricant. Wetness.
The notional lubricant – the substance that eases movement between. It is the original meaning of the unguentarium that presents me with questions. It’s function has moved from ritual utility to one of observance/contemplation; marginalised. What effect does this have on it’s ritual meaning? The lack of wetness somehow permits it to become an object of contemplation. Changed function/object again. This is not resolved and may only provoke more questions. Even more reason for it to be made. ‘culture and nature’ is next.
This sounds like a plug, but it’s timing is making me smile. For a few weeks I have been struggling with listing my courses on The Alternatives website. It has been a navigational misunderstanding on my part (not knowing where to list the courses!) and I have been having intermittent conversations with the lovely folks at Alternatives to try and get some advice. Well, we have all been exceptionally busy but today? well today, I was presented with all information I needed. The upshot is that the courses are now listed on Alternatives for all to see. There is a message about timing and contentment there I think.
So find my workshops in the classifieds, http://www.alternatives.org.uk/Site/Classifieds.aspx
Very happy with my first smoke firing yesterday. Despite the weather the pots seemed to like the full elemental experience! I loved it too in truth and a hot mug of coffee in my wellies in the rain is hard to beat. Simple pleasures
Looking out for Alison Britton’s new publication on the unstable place of craft in art and design….just up my street 🙂