Artist: Katriona Drijber
Katriona Drijber, CANADA
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Growing up in the Rocky Mountains, I have always felt held in by their walls; through the medium of clay, I play with this sense of containment, creating spaces for people to enter into within the context of their daily lives. Working through function, I create spaces from which to draw sustenance in a literal way; this references the sustenance I draw metaphorically from the landscape which is so important to a part of my identity.
In my practice, I try to find balance between the piece that gets put in the glass cupboard and never used and the piece that goes straight from the dish drying rack and onto the table again. I blend the natural world outside the doors of the home with the friendships and relationships that grow and develop around the dinner table. I strive to create work that injects ethereality into everyday life, work that brings small moments out of the drab or the ordinary. Utilizing the transformative power of clay, I create microcosms which the viewer or user can explore –portals of escape into a fantastical refuge from the everyday.
The thin and translucent porcelain used in my functional work is evocative of much of what I love about the natural world – for instance, the petals of a flower or the veils of rain of a passing storm. I fire most of my ceramics in the soda kiln. This, for me, is also inextricably bound to my concepts of animation, gesture and the natural world. I enjoy the interplay between rough surfaces like bare clay or thin layers of flashing slip, and the wet and luscious surface of a glossy, runny glaze. Through the unpredictable process of soda firing, fleeting flashes of brightness and color, so illusory and hard to pin down in the natural world, can be captured upon the surface of a piece for people to enjoy for years in their everyday lives.