Photo: Hadar Saifan
Pink stoneware, transparent glaze and black glaze; wheel thrown, altered
Ariela Abrahamson, b. 1972
An impulsive and uncalculated hand movement has cut and slashed through the perfect, finished object. The stable vessel, endowed with a clear function, was sliced, inverted, and reassembled, so that interior and exterior exchanged functions. The new object – clumsy and unstable – is non-functional and useless.
“For the past twenty years, pottery-making has been the basis for my work. After working on the wheel and creating a vessel, I take the body created using a traditional technique, and subject it to technical manipulations. I strip it of its meaning, transforming it into something new with a unique statement, something of my own. I am fascinated by the internal gaze, the revelation of the interior. A perfect, utopian ideal versus reality. An image versus an inner truth.
I reveal the properties of the material and enable them to be given expression through the objects
I create, while relying on the fact that in contrast to other materials, the ceramic material has hardly been process, and can be used to copy almost any form or material.
Since the material is alive and is constantly changing its character – from soft, flexible and wet to hard, stable and dry – there is a given time period in which one can initiate the process. The moment I begin manipulating the volume I created on the wheel – there is no way back, and I can’t stop. I am working on borrowed time. And sometimes I still have to pause because the material is too soft and collapses – yet if I wait too long, it will break in my hands.
My attitude towards the material is one of awe, esteem, wonder and amazement – which stand out in contrast to the desire to control, subject and fix. The ambivalence imbued in the momentary enjoyment of control and action versus the desire to remember what is primeval and natural – to observe and simply be.”
On display at the Rothschild Gallery, Tel Aviv Biennale of Crafts & Design, MUZA – Eretz Israel Museum, Tel Aviv.