Gillian Parke: New Work

Nov 6th - Nov 29th, 2009

Gillian Parke has focused her creative energy on ceramic art for 15 years by combining elements of manufactured porcelain and Japanese pottery to create unconventional works of art. In fact, there is a lot of unconventional wisdom in Parke’s story. She discovered an interest in porcelain early on in her childhood during summer trips in Northern Ireland, where she would take excursions to local china shops to buy small porcelain souvenirs with her grandmother.

In 1993 Parke received her BA in Chemistry from Boston University, followed by an MFA in 2004 from East Carolina University in Greenville, NC. Parke's work pays tribute to various ceramic traditions, pristine porcelain tableware of Eastern Europe and the rough hewn honesty of Shigaraki ware, all mixed with kitsch decals and luster to reference American ceramic's sometimes feminine hobbyist past. She does this in a unique and accomplished way, mixing history, cultures and traditions, resulting in the creation of highly thoughtful and beautiful objects.

Recently, Parke was named a recipient of the 2008 Emerging Artist Award by Ceramics Monthly magazine, a well deserved distinction. She describes her work as “illustrating the contrasts in aesthetics, forms, traditions and function found between Japanese pottery and fine porcelain”. Through her application of under glazes, over glazes and decals, “the textures are further enriched to give a more visceral surface not often associated with porcelain."