Emotive Structures in Clay
THE CERAMICS OF BRIGITTE LONG
Employing stoneware and porcelain as her medium, Brigitte Long defines herself a sculptor. Simplicity, balance, power, strength and fragility are the signature characteristics of her work.
Profile by Betsy Shands.
THE first encounter Brigitte Long had with clay dates back almost 30 years to when she was a student at the School of Fine Arts (evening classes at Quimper and Grenoble).Working in clay in tandem with other media, at one decisive point, clay imposed itself as the vehicle of choice for her expression. Like a game of handball, passing the clay between her hands, she found her life’s work. It became a dialogue with matter. Using clay, porcelain and adding other materials such as paper and plant material, she embarked on an adventure which is continuing today. Exploring textures and different firing techniques, she decided Raku best suited her search for modes of expressing her innermost yearnings. She also discovered that the demands of the technique pushed her to find her own language, her own interpretation and, ultimately, develop her own unique expression. When dealing with intense, rough or subtle forms, she sensed secret stirrings inside the matter that space would suddenly break through to create a singular encounter between man and nature where the balance is ephemeral. Clay transforms into stone, to rock, to cliff, like witnessing history, or seeking a stable and peaceful world enounced through silence like milestones along the road. Clay creates and defines spaces. As most of the sculptures are white or off white in colour her ‘pieces look like fragments of a white desert’ (Gina de Luca –Arte Diem2013).Nature becomes a prelude to creation. In her ceramic sculptures or installations she plays with the dichotomies of stillness v tension, emptiness v full spaces. Opposites achieve complementarity rather than conflict in her pieces.
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