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Title

Joadja aplite native porcelain stone, Australia

2005


Artist

Steve Harrison

1952 -


About

Over a career stretching back to the 1970s Steve Harrison has been many things: ceramicist, technologist and environmental activist. These roles feed in to Harrison’s practice as a potter which has a distinctive link to the traditions of Bernard Leach. Leach advocated simple and utilitarian forms and saw pottery as a combination of Western and Eastern arts and philosophies. These traditions were transmitted through the regional outpost of the National Art School, Sydney, and the founder of the ceramics department there, Peter Rushforth, who was highly influential on Harrison. Rushforth’s work married a distinctly Japanese folk craft tradition with the colours of the Blue Mountains landscape where he lived and worked. Harrison's work echoes this style.

Harrison’s ceramics take simple forms - specifically bowls and cups as a vehicle through which to articulate concerns around ceramic history, the environment, and a way of life based upon trying to touch the ground lightly. His research into kiln and clay technology has led him to a simplification of production and sourcing of materials that strips ceramics back to its origins.

His important series of bowls known as '5 stones' are made from the five naturally occurring sources of porcelain in the world: Jingdezhen, China; Yanggu, Korea; Arita, Japan; Cornwall, UK and Mittagong, Australia. Harrison's investigations into these sources stretch over 15 years, from 2002 to 2017. He is interested in the origins of these porcelain sources, specifically centred around a rock called serecite, which is ground and processed into a clay body without additives. It is this sourcing and pressing, and the making of the work near the source which is of interest to Harrison. Workng on the idea of sustainability, works are made from a 50-kilometre-wide palette of materials, not only for clay and glaze materials such as local rocks, shales, gravels and ash, but also the wood that fires the kiln.

This work is made from 100 per cent ground Joadja Aplite porcelain stone, mixed with water. A small amount of the body exposed to the flame at the base shows the body texture and colour.


Details


Date

2005


Media category

Ceramic


Materials used

Joadja aplite native porcelain stone, wood fired, Joadja stone glaze, local limestone flux


Dimensions

7.5 x 12.9 x 12.7 cm


Credit

Vicki Grima Ceramics Fund and Mollie Douglas Bequest Fund 2020


Location

Not on display


Accession number

110.2020


Artist information

Steve Harrison

Works in the collection

13