All exhibitions

Astrid Heimer, Leena Juvonen and Malene Pedersen

Motions and Connections, ceramic art

September 13, 2023
September 30, 2023

Motions and Connections
With clay in our hands, and form as the primary statement, we aim to explore the concept of reciprocity. We strive to listen deep into the processes of interacting with materials and images to look for other answers, surprising answers, or perhaps not answers but new questions. The concept of reciprocity describes the dynamic processes we strive for in our work, whether it is inherent forces and movements in the clay or interrelational expressions in the art work. Connections is about relations and form expression which have root in being human and how we connect to the earth through our strong sense for materiality.


Astrid Heimer:

Traces from human forms, structures and movements are often seen in my work. The grip, as a starting point for exploration of forms is a central topic. The imprint of the grip in the plastic clay works as a human statement, and most of the sculptures are based on how the force of the grip creates structure and directions in the forms.

By exploring interactions between positive and negative forms based on human forms, the sculptures simultaneously appear strange and familiar. Sometimes the drawn, spatial lines can be recognized as animal-like forms, or as motions in nature. The white, unglazed porcelain is chosen for some of the sculptures to make a contrast to the clay that firstly is plastic and soft. The other sculptures are fired with various techniques to create surface qualities from bright, shiny to earthy colors.

Astrid Heimer is a ceramic artist with diploma from Oslo Academy of the Arts (1987) and completed her phd, ‘Grip to get a grip of form. Concrete and abstract comprehension of for’, from University of South-Eastern Norway (2020). She lives and has her ceramic studio in Oslo, Norway. Parallel she works as associate professor at the department for Product Design at Oslo Metropolitan University. Fields of interest, beside ceramics is aesthetics and perceptions and how these three fields can contribute to arise awareness and engagement in interaction with people, surroundings and material cultures.

Leena Juvonen:

A few years ago, I became interested in free dance. As a ceramic artist, movement, rhythm, and balance are familiar concepts to me through working with clay. Dancing has widen my experience through own body. My way of working has been affected by dyslexia, which limits my visual perception. Clay has been an important tool as a haptic material. Just like free dancing, hand building with clay is a process in relation to time and space, where the previous movement affects the next and the balance of the form requires conscious presence.

The form created from clay and the images of hands and faces printed on it express desire for reciprocity in human relations. I try to listen the processes of interaction and sharing, to look for answers and questions, where outstretched hand can reach where words cannot reach. I also study dynamic process in the material, such as the internal forces and movements of the clay, utilizing a temperature of 1100 degrees and wild clays in wood-fired ceramics. Using local natural clay is an ecological act that saves nature.

The content of my work has long been the effect of man on his environment. Humans are part of nature and leave engram in their communities as well. Through my own experiences, the starting point has been the examination of the changes in the social media cycle in slow-moving phenomena, such as the use of streaming services and their impact through algorithms and settings on my social interaction. This, as well as the rapidly developing artificial intelligence, are forces that follow their own laws. Without sufficient information, it is difficult for an individual to manage their rights to privacy. The works reflect the confusion of interaction when technology takes over the field of physical encounter.

Leena Juvonen is ceramist (MA) lives in Helsinki. She has worked as a ceramic artist for 30 years and has taught at Aalto University and Adult education centers. Since building her own Train kiln 2011, she has focused on wood firing

Malene Halkjær Pedersen, sculptor, Anholt Island, DK

“A leaf a gourd a shell a net a bag a sling a sack a bottle a pot a box a container. A holder. A recipient.” (Ursula Le Guin – The carrier bag theory of fiction)

Currently I spend time talking to the clay. Inquiring. Listening. Pretending I never met clay before. Unlearning. I wonder: “What is the language of this time?” I am engaged with vessels with or without a purpose, and with purely sculptural forms. Fired and unfired. Often part of a context; An installation, a performance. Collaborations and being a part of artistic communities are of great significance to my work.

Malene Halkjær Pedersen is a Danish artist who works sculpturally with fired as well as unfired clay combined with found objects f.ex. driftwood, bones or seaweed. She lives and works on the small island of Anholt 3 hours from the Danish mainland, and her artistic expression is closely connected with the island's nature and the isolated life there. A daily part of her artistic practise are wanderings in search of inspiration and foraging for materials. The solitude of island life is aligned by collaborations with other artists leading to expressions such as installations and performances. Malene also works with teaching, where she guides children and young people through creative processes.

Malene is educated at Design School Kolding and Bergen Academy of Art and Design

Leena Juvonen: Reverberate, 2023, stoneware