Material exploration – materials,extrusions and slips 

To start my investigation I have begun to explore how different slips and clay body’s react to one another focusing on play and form, with Memory, sensibility, and intuition at mind. The reason for this mini test series is purely explorative, it is a starting point to begin to understand how different clay forms work and contrast together, to begin to challenge the plasticity, malleability, and rules of the material. I am interested in the tension between clay materials, how two clay body’s may pull apart from each other due to different shrinkage rates, in result forming cracks on the surface of the object, how the motion and direction of slip may apply a sense of gravity and weight to the object.

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Amongst the maquettes, What appeals to me the most is the oozing characteristics of porcelain slip upon the extruded tubes, (featured at top). I am unsure at this moment in time why I am pulled toward this material characteristic, perhaps it is simply aesthetically soothing and appealing, or possibly something more, some form of material memory perhaps ? an associative relationship between materials – porcelain and perhaps cement? a memory/material sensibility trigger of sorts.

The idea for these mini maquettes was to begin to try and denote some form of material context to these extruded shapes, to push the possibilities and aesthetics of these objects. By altering the texture of the clay body am I beginning to alter how we perceive these objects? Smooth and industrial – textured and earthly? If we begin to alter the textural surface of an object do we begin to perceive that object in a new light? Is this because we denote certain feelings to certain textures and materials ?. It will be interesting to see how these objects react to one another in the kiln, perhaps the surfaces will completely reject one another and simply crumble apart.

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Although consuming these objects, to some degree the objects still retained a memory of their shape which was interesting, much like for example, a sunken battleship that has been left on the bottom of the ocean for 100’s of years.  Although the ship has been abandoned, claimed by the sea and the creatures that inhabit the ocean, much like the extruder sculptures the shape and thus memory of that object are very much distinct and recognizable. You could say it’s an almost reverse Pareidolia. Pareidolia referring to the psychological phenomenon in which  (an image or a sound) wherein the mind perceives a familiar pattern of something where none actually exists, so in peculiar yet hilarious scenarios (when people see Jesus in burnt toast) for example.

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