Wednesday, March 30, 2011

inspiration: new work

Here is the work I've done for the 'Inspiration' group exhibition which opened on Monday, 28 March at ArtSpace Durban gallery. It's on for another two weeks. 25 artists were invited to participate in the show. Each artist had to select an artwork from the Durban Art Gallery's archive and make a work inspired by that piece. I chose Ryan Arenson's White Tree, Black Rider, Coloured Chickens triptych. I really liked the motifs that Arenson chose for his oil paintings, particularly his Pierneef tree.

I've been fascinated with trees for a while now, for me they are like the watchers of the world. A tree I'm particularly obsessed with, is one I walk past every day on my way to work. I think it was struck by lightening a few years ago, and it has since died and shed it's bark. The sun has bleached the tree to these wonderful shades of grey and it is a favourite perch for birds in the area. I've photographed this tree many times and in different light, against the stark blue sky of a autumn day to the moody, overcast humid summer afternoon.

Here is my interpretation of Arenson's work:

Carla da Cruz - grey tree, dark rider, brown chickens, 2011, glazed ceramic


grey tree, 2011, glazed ceramic










grey tree, detail
grey tree, detail



The 'dark rider' tile has an interesting 'woven' texture and is glazed in muted greys with a brilliant red glaze which has come out really intense, with a slight dimpling to the surface, a wonder of the firing process.

dark rider, 2011, glazed ceramic
dark rider, detail
dark rider, detail

The 'brown chickens' tile is quite playful, in that to me, the chickens appear to be dancing, scratching, pecking. I wanted to create movement with the placement of the chickens and the horizontal incised detail in the background. The muted brown glazes unify the composition.
 

brown chickens, 2011, glazed ceramic
brown chickens, detail
brown chickens, detail

I've really enjoyed working on these tiles and this has a new technique for me: the incised-line drawing into clay. Working with representational motifs is something I haven't done in a long time. I'm planning a whole series of pieces, where I will work in this manner.


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