This was a busy week preparing for my presentation but also an enjoyable one being able to listen to other students in the group presenting their ideas and research findings.

I have always considered myself to be quite scientific in the context of my practice exploring geological structures, mineralogical structures and cataclysmic events. I had ben researching artists reasons for using unfired clay to create work and the qualities of unfired clay exploited.

I decided to research this subject as I was moved by Paul Astbury’s wet clay works and Phoebe Cummings unfired clay installation at the Fragile exhibit. I had a personal connection with these works, it raised many questions for me. On researching Cummings’ and Astbury’s work there are many references to being human, reminders of our mortality, our fragile existence, our decay. The scale and cataclysmic destruction of geological events reminds us of this also but so do other organic inhabitants of the planet, viruses and disease.

I am beginning to discover who I am in relation to my own creative practice. Having been diagnosed with a terminal illness when I was 24 which was then a terminal illness it was a brutal reminder of my fragile existence. But it is tsunamis, earthquakes, volcanoes and the power of the earths forces that pose the greatest threat to our existence. I think I am exploring this in my work. I read a recent quote by Vladimir Nabokov that resonated with me

“The cradle rocks above an abyss, and common sense tells us that our existence is but a brief crack of light between two eternities of darkness.”

UncategorizedDean Coates