Thursday, June 4, 2009

Ceramic Journeys

I first started messing around with clay way back in 1996.  I did a night class in wheel throwing and was struck by the proverbial bolt of lightning from the sky. Wham bam. I quit my job as an English teacher and enrolled to study ceramics at the Southbank Institute of TAFE. I spent 5 years studying there and soaked up every bit of information and all the skills I could from the amazingly talented and committed staff who, even years after I left, continue to support me in my ceramic endeavours. To this day I frequently refer to my TAFE text books and handouts, and to all the experiments and tests and notes I took during that time. It was the best grounding I could have asked for. 

So its really lovely to be part of the Ceramic Journeys exhibition that is opening tomorrow night at Fusions Gallery.  Curated by Ronelle Clark, one of my first ever teachers, the exhibition showcases the work of a number of Southbank Tafe graduates, alongside the work of current students. It really highlights the diverse approaches to the medium and the varying pathways people have taken.

I popped in to the gallery earlier this week to help set up my work and it was like a mini-reunion! Within minutes everyone had slipped into technical jargon and chat about what everyone else was doing and making.  So i'm looking forward to the opening to catch up with more old friends and faces. In the face of ever diminishing ceramics departments and facilities, being part of this show has also reminded me how lucky I am to have been able to study there when I did, and with whom I did - both students and teachers. 

The show opens tomorrow, June 5th until June 20th, and the exhibitors include Terry Bouton, Irene Brown, Ky Curran, Denise Douglas, Tim Fry, Shannon Garson, Grant Hodges, Creina Moore, Pru Morrison, Pattie Murray, Isaac Patmore, Julie Shepherd, Emma Trigg, Rikke Weibel and myself. 


daniel said...

Hi Mel,
My name is Daniel Qualischefski; I'm a visual arts student in my third year at USQ in Toowoomba.
I'm a great fan of your artwork - its very beautiful & inspirational.
I hope to get to Ceramic Journeys - I saw your exhibition at Jan Manton Art last year and have been hanging out to see more of your work in person ever since!
Keep up the great work!
Cheers, ~Daniel

Anonymous said...

I too went to Southbank TAFE for my AD. I was there from 1993-1995. Every day I find a moment to be thankful for my time there and all that I was taught. Just today I thought of Marc as I poured a mold. I am now in America and I have been living off my education pretty much since I left. Thank you guys.