Before silversmithing and art teaching, I decorated pots for a living.
I married into a family of ceramic artists. My dutch mother-in-law, Kitty Breeden, left school to work in a pottery when she was 15 (without telling her parents) - her pottery career spanned over 50 years. She was an acclaimed master potter and I worked with her for well over 10 years, decorating the pots she and my husband made. We ran our pottery together while my three children were little, living an idyllic life in a beautiful hinterland town. They are years full of very precious memories.
A family member visited last weekend with a box full of our ceramic work. As I pulled out each piece it took me right back to the time and place of their creation - sensory memory is a powerful thing indeed. Included in this box were the very first pots I decorated for my sister-in-law when I was probably 18, along with functional wares with designs I painted over and over for many years. But this vase, made in 1999 and teapot, made in 2000 are extra special so I thought I would share them with you all.
This is a platter someone returned to me following our fire.
I was over the moon
happy today to be visited by three past art students - Zoe, Tanya and Lucas. I
know you shouldn’t have favourites as a teacher, really I do, but these
lovelies are extra special to me. They graduated in 2009 and were in the first
group of art students that I taught from Grade 10 through to 12. There was a
buzz of creativity in this class that resulted in many very exciting artworks.
They inspired one another and they inspired me!
Like these three, a number of
students from this year have pursued studies and careers in the arts post high
school (the ultimate reward for an art teacher).
So I think it is timely to finally start featuring some
of my past student’s art.
I will commence with my favourite work by Tanya.
Tanya created this work in Year 12 in response to the theme of 'Journeys' - she used Brothers Grimm stories as a metaphor for the loss of childhood innocence.
These days, Tanya is busy studying a double degree in fashion design and business while also working for Black Milk Clothing. You can follow this young designer at Benji the Label.
Needless to say, I am very proud of her!
I will post more work from this year group in the near future, I promise
(including some great photography by Zoe and video art by Lucas).
It is the dreaded end of semester reporting period at school at the moment. On the up side, a two week holiday is just around the corner; on the down side, I have a folder of unmarked assignments that can no longer be ignored. So why not procrastinate for a while longer by writing the next instalment of 'my own personal art collection'.
Today's feature artist is my brother-in-law, David Usher. Like Grace Gladdish, I had a number of artworks by David in my pre-fire collection. I have been a fan of this talented painter and ceramic artist since I was a teenager and actually, the very first original art I purchased was one of his early ceramic works. I currently have four paintings and one ceramic work in my collection.
Late Afternoon by the Dam 2009, Oil on Canvas 122 x 92 cm
My husband bought me this broody landscape for my birthday earlier this year (following some strong hints). It is the largest painting I own and I adore it!!
Darling Downs 1
1999, Oil on Canvas
52 x 25 cm
Another atmospheric landscape hangs with a group of works (which will be the subject of future posts).
2Browntown City 2002, Oil on Canvas 92 x 46 cm
I am blessed to have so many talented artists in my life. At the age of 14 I started dating my now husband and was embraced into his wonderful, artistic family. It is impossible to measure the influence they have had on my life, but even at 14, I knew that it would be profound. Having zero artistic input from my own family, I often think that I became an artist due to osmosis; although I have recently discovered that my cousin is a very talented photographer, which indicates I may have had some genetic predisposition towards art.
David has been a great role model throughout my life and has always encouraged me to pursue my creative ideas. I hope you enjoy looking at a few of his works here. If you live around Brisbane, watch out for his exhibitions at Doggett Street Studio.
I have spent the first weekend of winter in my studio (check out the banner custom made for me by Fabiola from archivioGotico). There has been a steady drizzle of rain and my hubby has kept the fire stoked day and night. This has been ever so excessive as living in Queensland, winter is not really winter. We usually only experience a few weeks of truely cold weather and the rest of the season is just glorious. Although unnecessary, the fire has been lovely and I have not felt the need to be anywhere but at home. Consequently, it has been a very productive weekend. I have now decided to make items in sets of 4 at a time. When a order comes through, my goal is to make that order and 3 more - stocking up for the Christmas shopping season.