1. What part of the process of creating art do you like best?
When I work with clay, I commence with an idea of the form I wish to achieve - but then my hands and the material seem to do their own thing. I love it when my conscious mind takes a back seat.
2. What is your working environment like?
It is in transition. Most of my work has been created in my open plan kitchen/dining/living. Now I've relocated everything to one room. Unfortunately, this means my inspirations and materials are not enjoying their usual dialogue with me.
3. What kind of (formal & informal) art training have you had?
Formally, a Diploma of Visual Arts (Ceramics) at Box Hill TAFE set me on the path of ceramic sculpture; informally, I'm reading, reading, reading: Joseph Campbell, John Berger, Ken Wilber and good fiction.
4. How has your art training affected the kind of art you produce?
The best thing about studying at Box Hill TAFE was the hands on tuition. Shane Kent empowers students to explore their own unique creativity and combines technical training with playfulness.
5. Name some important influences and inspirations in your art career.
I'm always inspired after a visit to the Indigenous gallery at Ian Potter and after viewing the traditional Asian bowls at NGV International. People who have inspired me include local artists Victoria Howlett, Robbie Harmsworth and Shane Kent; Gordon Baldwin and Cy Twombley are key contemporary artists whose work I admire. Visits to archaelogical museums overseas have provided countless inspirations.
6. What has been the most difficult thing you have encountered in your work?
Equipment - having control of a kiln that works! But equally important, finding time to be an artist, to get into the space and step back from the daily grind of modern life.
7. Have there been major turning points in your art career?
Having commenced art training as a mature adult, the completion of a TAFE diploma was important. The turning point might come when I develop a regular practice and don't let my 'day job' dominate my life!
8. What has been the highlight of your art career?
Being one of the students included in the FRESH Awards at Craft Victoria for my graduate show was pretty amazing.
Caption: Seed, ceramic, by Robyn Becker