Experimenting with the structural forms and shapes of pots, Auckland artist Lauren Winstone's exhibition at The Dowse, Holding holes, presents a series of new hand-thrown works in the upstairs Blumhardt Gallery. Holding holes opens on 27 October and runs until 10 February 2013.
Winstone is fascinated with the conventions of pots and with the way variations of design can alter our perceptions of what a pot is for. The works draw upon an on-going interest in the relationship between 'parts and wholes'. She is part of a new breed of New Zealand makers working today (others include Paul Maseyk, Octavia Cook, Martin Poppellwell, Joe Sheehan), who are comfortable occupying a space between the defined terms of art and craft.
The works in the show can be seen as a series of tests or interpretations, showcasing many versions of a cylindrical form. Her interest is not just in a pot's abstract shape, but how it is designed for function, as well as our social conceptions around its use. She uses the simple cylinder as her starting point, playing with the rim which is often 'scaled up' and 'placed back on to the base form'
"Our expectations of an object are often due to what we have encountered in similar objects before," she says.
Winstone is inspired by mid-century modernist ceramics, in particular in some of the more eccentric practices that emerged at the tail end of the modernist period. She speaks of the 'idiosyncratic forms with curious slippages' of English artist Ruth Duckworth and New Zealand potter Nola Barron.
Lauren Winstone is a former Director of Ramp Gallery, Hamilton, and a former member of the Rm Gallery collective, Auckland. In 2010 she was awarded a MFA (Hons) from the Elam School of Art, University of Auckland. Recent exhibitions include: Dugout, a group exhibition at Hopkinson Cundy, Auckland (2012); Collected Fictions, Waikato Museum (group, 2011); Humming on a Windless Slope, a solo window project for Objectspace, Auckland (2010); and the online project Responses to New Zealand Potter magazine (with Nick Spratt) for Alterations (2011).
Winstone received a 2010 Creative New Zealand grant to attend the Guldagergaard Ceramics Residency in Denmark, and in 2007 she undertook an artist residency at the Seoksu Art Project, Anyang City, Korea.
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