I decided to attend a few ceramic exhibitions recently with a group of friends. Most of these were held in Pretoria, are they becoming more culturally aware than Johannesburg?
The first exhibition was by young artist Corne Joubert, held at the association of Arts. Corneʼs whimsical miniature tiles were meticulously arranged in box frames, each group to tell its own story. I was pleasantly surprised by the different textures and techniques used. This is definitely an artist worth watching.
The next exhibition was the complete Corobrik collection. In conjunction Ceramics Southern Africa, this is a public collection that represents the history of ceramics in South Africa. It was great to view pieces in real life that was only seen on photographs before. Disappointing was the way some pieces were displayed in glass cabinets, competing for attention with the draped fabric that surrounded it. I was also shocked be the badly repaired kiln crack on a Hilton Nel piece (was that done by the artist or by someone else?) Overall an interesting exhibit and definitely worth the visit.
Johannesburg saw the group exhibition by Kendal Warren, Tania Babb, Wendy McLachlan, Loren Kaplan and Carol Hayward Fell, held at Objekt. Visiting this store is always pleasant as there is so much creativity to see. Unfortunately I only received notification of the exhibition after it opened, I am not sure if some pieces were already sold and went with the buyer, but were rather disappointed in the amount of work by some artists, Kendal Warren were the only one that was well represented, and it was good to see some of her vessels, as it is always her wall pieces that is normally on show.
Back in Pretoria again is the work of master potter Andrew Walford. I am not a great fan of the Anglo Oriental school, although I originally trained in it, but I can appreciate the work and am totally amazed by the skill employed by the old masters, which is sadly lost in the younger generation. Just as impressive is the owner designed house of Ora Joubert, where the exhibition was held. With being a great admirer of architecture, this was a very inspiring visit.