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“I make vessels as a response to exploring the materiality of clay and the metaphor of body as vessel.
Working with stoneware and terracotta, I utilise slow hand-building techniques like pinching and coiling in the process of making. Drawn to the meditative properties of these techniques and influenced by Zen Buddhism, the analytical mind is put aside in the moment of making in favour of the intuitive body and the phenomenological experience of clay. The tactile nature of clay lends itself to the exploration of form, allowing me to observe thoughts and sensations that arise in my own body, translating subtle experience into material qualities in the works.
The vessels are glazed in a palette of whites, natural earthy tones or left unglazed to show the body of the clay. Adopting a neutral palette allows the formal aspects of the pieces to stand out, emphasising the primary connection of both body and vessel to the primordial body, Mother Earth.
My fascination with making vessels as both a means of expression and as a spiritual practice is linked with my belief in the body and the earth as sacred. When I approach making as a means of connection to self and Nature, I appreciate the wonderful diversity of forms that emerge and go easy on the flaws and inaccuracies, accepting them as the beautiful idiosyncrasies that make each vessel unique.” – Viv Lee