In Reverence, Ruthin Crafts Centre

Ruthin Crafts Centre, Wales, UK
22 April 2023 – 2 July 2023

In Reverence toured to Ruthin Crafts Centre in April 2023. The space was low lit, akin to museum lighting, and this transformed the work again, increasing the quality of intimacy in the space. In her article for Ceramics Art and Perception, Dr. Frances Woodley described the body of work as “strictly speaking, neither still life nor installation, but hover[ing] somewhere in between, in what Bachelard terms, a ‘cell of intimacy’.”

In Reverence showed alongside Jeanette Orrell’s solo exhibition Drawings on Indigo. A beautiful exhibition about grief and the ancient Japanese art of indigo dying.


Exhibition text

The exhibition In Reverence exists as a study of humanness. Taking the domestic realm as the site of its inquiry, it endeavours to engage with the intangible, unsettling and tender aspects of life through material processes and form. Material frailties and capabilities become metaphors for our own human experience, the residue of making and the repetitive activity of craft resonant of the ceaseless invisible labours we enact within the home.
Points of transition and the in-between space remain as enduring themes, specifically the imperceptible, uncertain nature of these spaces and their relationship to our human experience. The domestic spaces that we occupy, benign on the surface, operate as la- tent gaps within the narratives of our lives, potent with intimacy and disquiet. The exhibition In Reverence seeks to use this evocative space to capture the ghosts of moments that go unnoticed within ordinary domestic settings, to explore what is hidden and what is revealed, and to question where and to what we attribute value.

Forms have been carved from porcelain by hand, or from plaster on the lathe, before being moulded and cast in a liquid porcelain; the heat of the kiln chamber is used to seek out moments of fluidity. Work has also been made in collaboration with furniture maker Jennifer Finnegan, and Fablab Cardiff making use of their 3D scanning and CNC milling technologies to produce milled walnut tableaux that function as components for furniture pieces.
The exhibition In Reverence seeks out connections between material, form and the genre of still life. In his study of our relationships to the objects we live with, anthropologist Daniel Miller argues ‘Surely if we can learn to listen to these things we have access to an authentic other voice.’ The silence that accompanies a stilled moment offers a space to ‘listen’, as Miller suggests, to the forms presented and to the vibrant presence of material.

This project was funded by the Arts Council of Wales and partnered by Glynn Vivian Art Gallery.