From Sharne Wolff…
Formerly housing the Darlinghurst Gaol, the doors of the National Art School [formerly East Sydney Technical College] first opened in 1921. With the sandstone gaol buildings now converted to studios, classes in painting, sculpture, design and ceramics were increasingly well attended. During the 1950s and 60s – as recounted by Deborah Beck in her history of the NAS – “…especially popular were the evening ceramics classes, with prospective students queuing for hours down Forbes Street during enrolment week.”
Celebrating the vibrancy of the studio ceramics tradition at the NAS across six decades is the exhibition, Turn Turn Turn: The Studio Ceramics Tradition at the National Art School. Curated by Glenn Barkley in what has already been dubbed ‘The Year of Ceramics’ by casual observers, are works by over 100 artists – all educators or alumni of the School. Highlighting the work of 12 artists in particular, the conceptual premise of the display is to loosely “track the shift from an emphasis on Japanese and English studio traditions …through to the early 21st century ‘anything goes’”. The show’s title refers both to the wheel-formed work of then and now, but also to the changes brought to ceramic practice via advanced technology on the one hand and a heightened interest in the handcrafted object on the other.
Artists include: Stephen Bird, Louise Boscacci, Lynda Draper, Merran Esson, Steve Harrison, Patsy Hely, Juz Kitson, Janet Mansfield, Alan Peascod, Peter Rushforth AM, Thancoupie Gloria Fletcher Jones AO and Toni Warburton.
Until August 8
National Art School Gallery, Darlinghurst
Pic: Lynda Draper, Annette earthenware, various glazes, 45 x 54 x 54 cm. Artbank Collection, purchased 2014.