“Revolutions” explores the dynamics of power and gender through vivid imagery painted onto large ceramic vessels. Even though this series is very much rooted in the tradition of the narrative ceramic vessel, these forms deconstruct the functionality of a decorative utilitarian receptacle. The vessel functions as a circular canvas whose interior and exterior spaces are activated with imagery examining the ever-changing roles of women and cultural gender norms. It brings into question constructions of power in relation to expectations of behavior and beauty. Complexities of sexuality, motherhood, and ageing are revealed with the vessels slowly rotating on pedestals, creating a continually moving and overlapping progression of imagery of revolving juxtapositions, nuanced angles, and sliding points of view.
The renderings on the surfaces are informed by Akio Takamori sculptures, Soviet propaganda posters, the early Will Eisner comics, the wordless woodcut novels of the 1920s, the Ancient Greek orgy cups and the Japanese Ukiyo-e prints. The clay forms are hand-built using the coil technique, then bisque-fired before they are painted with underglazes in layers, and scratched into the painted surface. The color palette is purposely restricted to one traditionally used in printmaking: most of the imagery is black and white, an homage to the stark language of the woodcut print. Red is also added as an essential primary color.
The tropes and allusions presented in the works cannot be separated from the ongoing debate over female body rights concerning birth/abortion, circumcision, body coverage/exposure, contraception, and obligations within matrimony. Throughout history, the unclothed female figure has carried the baggage of objectification, voyeurism, exoticism, desire, and struggle for power and control.