Emily Gardiner

Bursary Winner 2014

Material Catharsis

If material is reality and reality is truth, then it could be argued that the raw, visceral qualities of matter anchor us to the real world through the experiential truth of their physical and tangible existence.

Through exploration of ductility, transient states of matter and voluptuous physicality of flow, the seductive and tactile properties of the material reveal themselves. Disrupting and challenging the relationship between glaze and clay body by allowing the glaze to take on a more physical form exposes states of tension, dependence, containment and liberation, a nascent catharsis of matter.

This ‘fluid’ state of matter is dynamic and, at times, absurd but its sensuous physicality is intriguing and utterly mesmerising.

The physicality of matter and the convergence and collision of materials is at the heart of Emily’s sculptural ceramic work, whether exploring underlying elements of chaos and order, symbiosis and growth or the physical structure of glaze.

Driven by a passion for experimentation and a desire to push materials to the limit, she embraces unpredictability; ‘To control every element dilutes the energy in a piece; there needs to be a dialogue with the material for it to be interesting to me.  I think of myself almost as a ceramic explorer, always searching and testing new ideas and possibilities.’