Ceramics in Flux

Binary by Yurim Gough

One of my favourite artists-to-watch, the brilliant Yurim Gough, is having something of a busy year. Having just finished exhibiting in The RWA’s Drawn exhibition in Bristol, she’s also been selected to show works at the Flux Exhibition in London this July.

FLUX exhibition is on at Chelsea College of Arts, London, from July 12-16th July 2017.

Binary by Yurim Gough

Binary by Yurim Gough

“The ceramic pieces which I will be exhibiting at Flux are much larger than any I’ve created before, but follow on in development from the bowls I’ve made previously,” Yurim explains. “I had the idea that by setting the bowls in relief into a much larger vase, I could display more than one of my individual as part of the same piece.”

It’s a unique method, bringing together Yurim’s beautiful, provocative artworks into tangible series. “It means that I can have a theme for each piece.”

Loves by Yurim Gough

Loves by Yurim Gough

Her first work in the series is a vase with a single concave face in the side, “like a bowl set into it.” The next in the series has two faces, and three and so on up to the sixth piece, which has six faces (would have loved the surprise here of seven faces, but that’s just my contrary side). “The pieces with one, three, four and six faces have been completed and will be exhibited,” Yurim says.

Each vase is a study in compare and contrast, with several opposing and complimentary opposites, Yurim tells me, “such the inverted faces and the pointed tops of the vases, like male and female, yin and yang.”

Birth by Yurim Gough

Birth by Yurim Gough

The first piece, pictured directly above, is titled Birth. “It has one face, showing unity, the sperm and the egg.”

The second piece, shown in the first tow images in this post, is Binary, and is shaped into two concave breasts, or buttocks, with the artwork highlighting these feminine body parts so hyper-sensualised by modern ideals of beauty and fashion.

Wind by Yurim Gough, part of her Elements artwork

Wind by Yurim Gough, part of her Elements artwork

The fourth work, Elements, offers Yurim’s take on water, fire, wind and mother earth, while the sixth vase, Loves, reveals six different kinds of love.

“I began adding colour to my work at the end of 2015, and found this enabled me to take a new direction with my art,” says Yurim. “When I began carrying out my life drawings on the ceramics, I saw that the pictures in it prompted me to think about the shapes of the human body and how these reflect on the potential of our lives.”

Water by Yurim Gough, part of her Elements artwork

Water by Yurim Gough, part of her Elements artwork

To explore this idea further, Yurim went beyond her life drawings to sample and blend in images sourced from the internet “to bring the stories I imagined to life.”

It’s an exciting project set to stir intrigue and recognition in viewers to the show. See them for yourself at FLUX exhibition from July 12-16th July 2017, at Chelsea College of Arts, London.

Find full details at fluxexhibition.com and yurimgough.com.

Are you an artist or do you know an artist who would like to be showcased on SkyLightRain.com? Get in touch at judy(at)socketcreative.com.

A different kind of art fair

Hide and Seek by artist Yurim Gough

Hide and Seek by artist Yurim Gough

A while ago I wrote about the talents of life artist and ceramicist Yurim Gough. Her work still astounds me.

If you haven’t yet laid eyes on it yourself, you might want to hot foot it to Victoria House, London WC1A 2QP. Yurim is showcasing the quiet resonance of her pieces at The Other Art Fair there until 10th April 2016.

Recent works include this trio of hand shaped, stone-fired bowls, titled Hide and Seek.

Each one shows a life model in the same pose, shown from a different perspective. I think they would make a wonderful #writingprompt too!

Find details of The Other Art Fair here.

Lifework with Yurim Gough

yurim-gough-korean-ceramic-artist-two-women-angle-viewWho says drawings need to be done on paper or canvas? Korean artist Yurim Gough has found clay to be the perfect medium, much to her own surprise.

“It was always my dream to be an artist, but in my own country I never even touched clay,” says the former fashion designer, who moved to Bristol eight years ago in search of a new creative direction.

In fashion design Yurim experimented with a multitude of materials, but says it took five years of exploring “new mediums for my art, such as wood-carving, before I found that the feeling of clay told me that it was my thing to use. In fashion design I took great satisfaction from realising my imagination, and the attraction of clay is in being able to achieve that same satisfaction.”

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Since early childhood, Yurim has “always been drawing. I was looking for a long time for what I could do that would make me the most happy, and since the drawing had always done this, and now the clay did too, it just happened that I brought these two things together.”

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It was a visit to “a reclusive local pebble beach” that helped realisation dawn. “I was playing with the stones, drawing on them with a pencil for fun and making up stories.”

Yurim is entirely self-taught, developing her skills through “concentration and repetition. I went to lots of life drawing sessions on and off for a period of almost 20 years.”

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To create the ceramic bowls and other objects that she likes to draw on, she explains, “I hand-mold the pieces, then they are bisque fired, then I draw in front of a live model with ceramic pencil.”

Following this, the artwork is glazed then fired. “I then apply gold lustre and fire again.”

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Through combining her ceramics with her beloved drawing, Yurim says she had something of a breakthrough. “I have never rubbed anything out when life drawing, because there is not enough time,” she says. “One day I was drawing and made a mistake and in frustration, I crossed strong lines through the attempt. It made me feel so free, I suddenly realised that this was me, and carried on. I also found that drawing like this, I could focus in a way I had not been able to before.”

 

The result is a sketchy, vibrant style crammed with vitality. Her figures are gorgeous but imperfect, just as we are – in fact, their stunning beauty lies in their imperfections.

Being in front of a living, breathing model has an impact too.

“I love the human energy giving me craziness, sadness, happiness and other feelings – it is different every time.”

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They fizz within their stillness, seemingly holding in emotions evident in their posture, and where their tensions lie, with Yurim’s lines emphasising this with powerful understatement.

The restrictions imposed by a life class drives her productivity, that, “and wanting see what the result will be. Living in my country, and working in fashion, I never had any time. Coming to Bristol things slowed down and I realised what I could do with limited time. In life drawing, you have a fixed time limit for the pose but you have to slow down and see what comes out.”

Find more of Yurim’s work at yurimgough.com and shop.theotherartfair.com/artists/yurim-gough.

Know an artist you’d like to see showcased on SkyLightRain.com? Give me a shout at judy(at)socketcreative.com.

Figurework with Linda Samson

Life class 2 ceramic tile painting cr Linda Samson

Life class 2 ceramic tile painting © Linda Samson

The figures in Linda Samson’s artwork exude a distinct sense of solidity. Captured in paint, pen and ink or ceramics, they inhabit an enviably tangible space, as though they live deeply felt, vibrant lives just beyond their frames.

This impression makes sense to me when Linda explains that she draws inspiration from the Oceanic art of the Pacific Islands and, most recognisably perhaps, the monolithic statues of Easter Island.

“I think the strong forms came initially from my discovery of Oceanic art and the joined or reflected images from a study I did at the British Museum of conjoined twins,” Linda says. “Being traditionally trained at Glasgow School of Art, life drawings formed the foundations of my figurative style.”

The Bowl of Cherries, oil on canvas cr Linda Samson

The Bowl of Cherries, oil on canvas © Linda Samson

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