Vallauris, France

Between 23 February-2 April, 2010 I undertook a residency organised by A.I.R Vallauris in Vallauris France. Vallauris is a small medieval town in southern France with a strong historical ceramic tradition. Picasso lived there and explored ceramics between 1946-49, and there is a Picasso museum and ceramics museum in the town centre. The exhibition culminated in an exhibition at La Cabanon between 27 March-1 April, and upon returning to Australia I held an exhibition of ceramic and photographic works inspired by the residency at Red Gallery, Nth Fitzroy.

Enquiries about the purchase of any of these artworks, either the sculptures or photographs should be forwarded via email.


ARTIST STATEMENT for Vallauris residency:

The impetus for my artwork is the natural environment, and this residency continues my interest in the expressive properties of clay to portray organic elements within the landscape. Undertaking a residency in a town, that appeared to me, to have a modern façade yet an ancient expression, presented a blending of the urban and organic to which I had not been previously exposed. I found myself surrounded by a built environment, yet it was organic in its colours, materials and textures. Being surrounded by this urban landscape, the initial inspiration for my artwork emerged via a representation of the beautiful and diverse chimney forms I saw everywhere.

As I gained confidence within my new surroundings I began to venture out, viewing the mountains, hillsides and coastlines of the area. This natural phenomena began to influence my ideas and materialised within my artwork, emerging as intermingling sculptural forms: chimneys merged with rolling hillsides, pocketing beach stones; seaside vegetation nestled within hillsides; and variegated beach stones and coastal rock formations appeared.

Locating and photographing the resultant sculptures within the originating inspirational landscape brings the artworks full cycle, resolving them as much as is possible within a short period.

As a sculptural ceramic artist this body of work represents the gradual discovery of the town of Vallauris and its surrounds, capturing an immediate and expressionist impression of a vibrant and colourful environment that I was fortunate to experience for an exciting, albeit brief, six weeks.


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This work by Dawn Whitehand is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License.