Surface and Containment 1998.

Surface and Containment and Deconstructed Teaset were artefacts created for the Exhibition: Raku-Harmony of Earth, Water and Fire. International Raku Symposium and Exhibition (co-curated) at Biseul Arts Centre, Daegu, Korea, 2001.

The works were sent from the UK and created on-site in a symposium at the Biseul Arts Centre, Daegu, Korea, informed by the local culture and environment. My work was inspired by drinking vessels – both oriental tea-bowls (created for Tea-Ceremony) and the iconography of the English consumption of tea, to examine the history of the raku technique and its contexts.

It was a group exhibition including participants from Korea alongside a group of international artists that I had helped to select through my contacts established from my authorship of Raku – Investigations into Fire (first published in 1999, revised in 2007).   I assisted in the curating of the exhibition and symposium. My pieces investigated the possibility of using the traditions and history of raku to inspire contemporary work. The oriental heritage of the technique was a central concern of the symposium, and became a focus of dispute between the Japanese and Korean hosts; Korea is regarded as the place of birth of the first potter to be given the family name of Raku. (It was ironic that the technique manifested in the contemporary work was predominately in the tradition of American raku which is itself a radical deviation from the Japanese tradition, and also the subject of disputed nomenclature [Soldner]).