“Textural, light, subtle, destructed, raw, contemporary, natural.” The works created by Sydney-based ceramicist Alana Wilson seem to defy gravity. Sculpted by hand, her perfectly imperfect ceramics possess a fragility and finesse juxtaposed with boldness in form and figure.
“Essentially what I look for in my own work is the duality of the object and the experiential process, with the space between the works and the viewer forming an immediate and lasting perception.”
An interest in design was what first spurred Wilson towards a creative life path, eventuating in the study of Fine Arts at Sydney’s National Art School where she first discovered ceramics. “I had not been exposed to ceramics as a medium prior to NAS but fell in love with it on my first day and have continued with it ever since,” she explains. She now works in a studio overlooking Sydney’s Tamarama beach – a sandstone work space that emulates the coastline she finds inspiration in. “I love watching the waves from the studio and observing the environment as the light changes throughout the day and the seasons change throughout the year.”
“I have worked hard to be able to do what I love and love what I do, and being able to share that and work with likeminded people is hugely rewarding.”
Wilson isn’t interested in impersonation. Nor does she rely on proven techniques developed by the artists in her field. When stepping into her studio she aims to create a “harmonising a refinement of form with highly technical and experimental glazing processes … The vision I have for my work is not a well-beaten path.” On what inspires her creative process, Wilson explains, “More often than not it’s a balance of theoretical and philosophical concepts with my immediate natural and human surroundings – the people and environments I am with each day.”
“The artists I greatly admire for their journeys are Cy Twombly, Lucie Rie, Donald Judd as well as fellow Aussies Daniel Askill, Simone Gooch, Bart Celestino and Ricky Swallow.”
With a career that includes solo exhibitions and collaborations with photographers, designers and editors, Wilson is not one to rest on what once was. “I aim to create a holistic vision across art, fashion, design, life in general and I love working on projects that encompass and communicate this flow of ideas …” Quiet and kind, exacting and sure in her ideas and talent, Wilson and her instinctive shapes have us wholly enchanted.
Wilson is currently exhibiting Brutalist Meditations – an installation of sculptural and ceramic works at Lee Mathews, Paddington until May 31.
PHOTOGRAPHY Caroline Wood
FASHION Ellen Presbury
TALENT Alana Wilson
HAIR & MAKEUP Corinna Wilmshurst