Billy Goat Plum
15cm x 40cm x 30cm
After Yr. 12 I completed a 3-year Diploma in Applied arts majoring in Ceramics in 1981. I then pursued a path of seeking more knowledge and worked under Bronwyn Clarke in her studio at Terrey Hills, Sydney in 1982. My first studio was in a rented house in Howard Avenue, Dee Why Sydney in 1983.
I have lived a gypsy life for reasons I still don’t know. My abodes over the years have included a studio space where I could practice my love, ceramics. I completed a Diploma in Education at the University of Newcastle in 1993, Post Graduate certificate in Aboriginal Studies in 1994 and a Certificate in Fine Arts at Newcastle TAFE in 1995. From 1985 to 1993 I attended numerous workshops with leading ceramicists and painters including Greg Daly, Jeff Mitchum, Peter Lane, Claire Locker, Ivan England, Peter Lane to name a few. My current studio is located in Wollongong where I was born and my children and grandchildren reside.
Reflecting on why I practice my art, there really was no other path for me. I am part of a creative family. My mother enrolled me in art classes as a 9 year old at Wollongong TAFE. Of my four sisters one is a published author and another a practicing Fibre artist and painter.
Ceramics is my wellbeing safe zone and I have warmed to the personal challenge of process, failures and successes in my studio. I live to be in my studio but I have continued to teach on a casual basis to support myself financially. I use stoneware clays and develop all of my glaze colours to enhance the forms I make. I am drawn to build texture and depth onto the clay surface. I carve into the clay and impress the textures of found objects into the clay surface. I then hand paint the impressions and apply a clear glaze wiping off the excess to create a slight shine to the finished piece.
In 2020 I was asked to be a part of "The Living Room" where Amanda Keller and her crew came to my studio to film. I was a finalist in the following shows in 2021; Siliceous Award for Ceramic Excellence, Urunga Small Sculpture prize and Little Things art prize.
After completing a 3-year Diploma in Applied Arts in 1981, I had been given the skills to develop my passion to design and make pieces that reflect my commitment to expressing myself through clay. I mostly use the wheel or a combination of wheel and hand building to construct a form. I use stoneware clays and have developed glazes and coloured slips over time that assist in creating the compositions in my work.
When making, I am deeply focused on the form I make and how it sits in the space around it. I build texture and depth onto the clay surface by carving and painting coloured slips in layers.
My current Australian bush flower works begin with a reference for e.g. a flower or tree. I draw lines and shapes into the clay that evolve into a composition that appears as a fleeting moment in the real world. I attempt to capture colour, texture and feelings that cannot be held in nature, working intuitively on the clay surface.
My intention is to entice the viewer to move closer and further explore the surface. A story that has been mine is now for the viewer to experience and connect with.
Through my work I express nature and flora because I am drawn to the transience of these landscapes.
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