May The Forms Be With You- Jennifer Dawes

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Medalta International Artists in Residence 

Exhibition: June 16th– August 6th  

Reception: June 16th 7-9pm 

May the Forms be with you- Jennifer Dawes

My work comes from a profound passion for pop culture and nerd references. Using each vessel not only as a canvas for decoration but as its own language of form that too compliments these references. Vessels; being used for story-telling and immaculate decoration make my concept digestible and ideal for my practice. Utilizing an array of mark-making techniques such as sgraffito, under-glazing, glazing and luster to create depth and complexity in the surfaces. I use the historical facet of 19th century decorated vessels and contextualize them within my own spectrum of identity. This work will become a study of historical form and decoration with pop culture themes.

In May the Forms be with you, I have created a wide-range of wares decorated with the pop cultural theme of Star Wars. Using Iconic characters, scenes and visual representations the viewer is engaged with a comical and light-hearted sensation. It allows the viewer of any age to be able to engage and personally identify with the work. Surrounding these visual cues of the Star Wars franchise I am referencing a 19th century decorative motif and Baroque decorative style, delivered through a witty and humorous disposition. These compositions are situated on thrown ceramic forms, each vessel representing 19th century commemorative ceramics in their profile, style and decorative flair.

While each piece lays homage to the intensity of surface decoration on ceramics from that era, it also plays with the high pedestal in which nerd cultural is placed within the 21st century. Seeing an eclectic group of iconic characters and visual clues of the Star Wars franchise on regal forms and high ornamentation it gives the pieces a fun, innocent and blithe appearance. This body of work is intended to be a fun, whimsical look through a reverence of historical forms with brightly coloured modern, pop cultural themes that I hope leaves the viewer with a new take on the ceramic decorative guise.

Artist Biography

Jennifer Dawes was born in Ingersoll, Ontario in 1992. She received her BFA at the Nova Scotia College of Art and Design in Halifax, Nova Scotia where she completed her ceramics degree with a minor in art history. Jennifer works with low-fired, wheel-thrown vessels that are highly decorated with underglazes, glazes and lustres.

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