Sydney, New South Wales, Australia 1928 – 2013
– 28 October, 2013
Sydney, New South Wales, Australia
Materials & Technique: ceramics, glazed stoneware
Artists usually name their work when it is finished, ready for exhibition. The title Kamares is from Greek objects I have admired over the years. My father was Greek and I am familiar with Greek culture.
Kamares VII formed part of a prestigious exhibition, Clay & fibre, which the noted fibre artist Mona Hessing and I were invited to stage at the National Gallery of Victoria in 1973. I say ‘stage’ because we saw the huge special exhibition space as a design challenge! Mona chose fibre colours from beige to earth red in tone, and I chose white as a jewel-like contrast. It was gratifying for Mona and me, after 2 1/2 years work, to know that thousands of people saw the exhibition. (Even now, 30 years later, I meet people who remember it!) Kamares VII is handbuilt (coiled and flattened). I worked on a kiln shelf which, later on, slides into a kiln for firing. I enjoy working in clay — whether it is to be cast in bronze, or fired as clay.
To develop an idea (the difficult bit) I do many full size sketches on paper and then small maquettes and full size clay pieces to see if it ‘works’. Having resolved technical problems, as well as the aesthetic, I do some variations on the theme, to make a family (or group) of several pieces. Kamares VII is the last of the Kamares group. The idea behind the Kamares group came from looking at everything — artefacts from museums all over the world (museums are a passion of mine) as well as natural objects: shells, seedpods, stones, the ears of elephants, and manta rays. In Kamares VII, I wanted to give a feeling of free movement to the work.
Marea Gazzard 2002
Text © National Gallery of Australia, Canberra 2010
From: Anne Gray (ed), Australian art in the National Gallery of Australia, National Gallery of Australia, Canberra, 2002