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Australian Ceramics Cover

Hidden Worlds- The Art of Sarah Rayner

Words by Shannon Garson

The Oxford English Dictionary defines a seed as “The unit of reproduction of a flowering plant, capable of developing into another such plant” another meaning of the word is “the cause or latent beginning of a feeling, process, or condition.”  Sarah Rayner’s latest work in porcelain encompasses both these meanings.   Delicate, pure white porcelain pods defy the term handbuilt yet that is how they are formed.  Shaped like pods, seeds, twigs and stamens these sculptures morph from familiar to deeply strange as the viewer is drawn through the groups of objects. The satin, white terra sigillata surface highlights the tiny pinholes covering the outside of the pods.  Viewed individually the sculptures reveal hidden details, tiny, beautiful clefts and crevices, a speckling of fine pinholes, interior cavities filled with miniscule, porcelain balls.  Grouped, the sculptures draw you in, pulling you from one mysterious object to the next, capturing the sense of wonder and discovery found in beach combing or foraging.

Extract only: see the full article in the Journal of Australian Ceramics. Vol 57 No 2 I July 2018 I Exploring Place.