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In these lonely, anxious times, we are all treasuring connection, and many of us are learning how to connect remotely.
For artists Jo Victoria and Robyn Campbell, being together-but-apart was already a habit as they worked in close, yet distant, collaboration on an exchange of knowledge in their respective media—porcelain and glass.
The resulting exhibition, Transference, is being displayed both online and in the flesh at Craft ACT until 27 June 2020. This show’s elegance and serenity is the perfect salve for the cruelty and confusion in the news.
The title Transference offers insight on a multitude of levels. As well as referring to the collaborative spirit of the artistic process, it describes the unique properties of porcelain and glass.
Both these substances are transformed in the kiln by a transfer of energy in the form of heat.
Further, both these translucent materials cause a transfer and transformation of light, which is softened and coloured as it passes through the work.
The artists took inspiration from the familiar natural landscapes of Canberran bushland and Mossy Point on the South Coast. Their works present a textural snapshot of these settings, layering depictions of bark, shell, water and stone.
The exhibition as a whole evokes the elemental with its striking colour-scheme of black and white punctuated with deep red and turquoise blue.
Looking at these quiet and reflective works one can’t help but think of the recent bushfires and the colours of ash, charcoal and flame, juxtaposed with the cool blue of the ocean.
Through expert use of materials, highlighting their texture and colour, Transference at once refers to these strange and disastrous times and offers relief from them.
Watching the dappling of light as it refracts and glows through Campbell and Victoria’s works evokes the same glinting, hopeful feeling as sunlight glistening in a rockpool or sparkling through eucalypt leaves.
Feature image: Robyn Campbell, Alight #1, 2020. Photo: courtesy of the artist.