Tuesday 31 December 2013


on boxing day Greg and Sally Malcher 
took me to an event in the biggest bowl in Australia

the MCG

a huge bowl, the inside lined 
with cricket enthusiasts
which filled the bowl with 
mexican waves
love and hate
lots and lots of noise
moment of intense silence
followed by 
wave after wave of human response
to the activities on the field

the field
where australians were seeking revenge
for years of loss of honour
as a result of loss of matches

they got their revenge
with their fourth win in Melbourne

my interest was with the bowl and the sound traveling around it
the emotions of it all

a huge singing bowl

"If everything is coming your way, you are in the wrong lane"


Friday 27 December 2013


this bowl, from my 2013 exhibition, was
selected for a project by Helen Davies
for an intriguing and wonderful project titled:
52 sound paintings
where the artist celebrates her 52nd birthday
for a year by creating a sound painting 
of the artwork of one artist each week
and i was the lucky artist chosen for the third week
check it out on:


and then if you like it you can enjoy 
all of the other artists' chosen
and Helen's musical response to them

When a good idea gets out, things begin to happen

Wednesday 18 December 2013


"During the Second World War, 
Winston Churchill’s finance minister 
said Britain should cut arts funding 
to support the war effort. 
Churchill’s response: 
“Then what are we fighting for?”"

Tuesday 10 December 2013

TheSmallestGalleryInVictoria (maybeAustralia)

some years ago, when I noticed an empty window 
at the Red Star cafe in Hepburn Springs. 

I got an idea. 
And 'when you have a good idea, act upon it'.
the idea was to create a small gallery in this space.

i proposed the idea to Ed, the owner, and he was into it.

i invited the artists on my database 
and the first one was Oliver Patsch
this was on November 2011. 
the present exhibitor is Kim Haughie
a local ceramicist

we have had painters
photographers etc.

both professionals and amateurs

the gallery is run on a volunteer basis
Ed does not charge for the space
and i do not charge for my monthly organisation time

a wonderful community project

so far we have had 25 artists in 
the 'RedStarWindowGallery'

and i have bookings until November next year

a small project with a big heart

Restore your sense of wonder

Saturday 12 October 2013


I have a tongue in my shoe

The other day while out for a walk I tripped over an unusual word. I picked it up and examined it. It  seemed to have the right weight,  excellent fragrance and good looks. In all, a fine word.

I took it home, taking care not to mix up the order of its letters. I put it on the table. I stood it up, laid it down, looked at it back to front and upside down. After all this I still had no idea what it was. What it meant. However, it felt like a word with many possibilities. It felt like a friendly word. A word you want to get to know. The best way to get to know a word is to read it, then make friends. When I read the word it said "Quotidian". I decided to look it up. It told me : 'Daily'. 'Of everyday'. I looked it up in another dictionary. It told me the same, but added 'trivial' and 'commonplace'.

I looked up trivial: 'of small value or importance'. How does commonplace find itself next to trivial I wondered, and who relegates things to that place? What happens when we trivialise the commonplace. A place where most of us live.

Each day I travel the common place. It is not trivial. It is common in that it is for everyone, in that we all use it. As in The Commons, where I found the word which started this whole thing. I walked  the road. The common road. This makes me a pedestrian. This word, besides the meaning of 'going on foot' also means 'dull, uninspiring, prosaic'. I sometimes wonder how this comes about? What is dull about a pedestrian? Maybe, in our culture, pedestrians are considered dull because they do not drive a car. However, I enjoy the undull activity of walking. In most cases I wear shoes to walk the road. These are common objects. But how common are they really.

At this stage I remember the following quote, "Everyday things represent the most overlooked knowledge". And here is where the word  'Quotidian' returns. It  suggests "The depths and reach of the commonplace". The Common Place.

I had a good look at my shoes which walk the Common Place. Good shoes. Functional. A strong sculptural form. A thought occurred. We place all sorts of  junk on plinths and pedestals (Pedestal?

Pedestrian? Dull? unaspiring? prosaic?) in galleries and call it Art. We place expensive bits of  food on another type of pedestal, large white porcelain plates, and call it Food Art. But we overlook the truly special, the truly magnificent. The Common Shoe. Call it Foot Art

How do we make a common object Special? In the same way we make everything special. By giving it 'attention'.

I gave my shoe attention by trying to name the parts of the whole. Embarrassingly I got as far as front and back, top and bottom and two sides. Then I looked inside and saw 'the tongue' and realised that every other aspect of the shoe would probably have a name as well. Not only a name, but also a story attached to the name. What, by the way, is a tongue doing in my shoe.

Why do we name things? Why do we learn the name for things?

Because I did not know the names of the parts I decided to go to a shoe shop. No one in any of the five shoe shops I visited could tell me the parts of a shoe. Then I went to find a boot maker. I found an old fashioned one. One who knew his stuff. When I told him my problem he said: "You don't see the thing because you don't know how to look. You don't know how to look because you don't know the names" So let's look at this shoe.

Tell me what you know, he said. I knew the sole and the heel. Placing the shoe on the sole and the heel we looked at the rest of the shoe. So what else it there? We enjoyed looking at the shoe for a while and noticed the wonderful lines which ran along it. Made me think that the modern car body is most probably based on the form of a shoe. Just another form of the same transport.

There is 'Lace'. Lace on a shoe? At the end of the lace is a hard bit. It used to be metal but now is plastic of sorts. This is the "Tag" or "Aglet". This protects the end of the lace from fraying. It also  makes it easier to push the lace through the "Grommets". The little holes which have as protection a small ring, or "Eyelet".

The boot maker explained that the parts of the shoe are made from different grades of leather. Grades in terms of strengths. The strongest piece is above the heel. It is called the 'Counter'. (Interestingly it is also the name for the curved part of the stern of a ship). Then there is the 'Cuff', which figures, it is  the piece of leather which goes across the top edge of the shoe. Just like  shirts and pants have cuffs. The piece which fits between the Counter and the Cuff is the 'Quarter'. The Frontal area which covers  the instep is called the 'Vamp'. Look up this word and wonder. Finally the strip of leather which connects the sole is called the 'Welt'. 'World' in German. Und warum. And why.

He tells me that "because we don't know the name of things, everyday things remain hidden". Now  here is the last word from the boot maker.  "When I repair a shoe I use a steel object to place the shoe on. What is its name......?"

And  here,  in  hiding, is the  answer to the boot maker’s last question.



Sunday 22 September 2013

Wednesday 14 August 2013


a diagonal line divides an otherwise empty space
a line of writing about the forest
a line of poetry 
like a sentence which sums up the exhibition

read it for yourself
from the 15th august to the 8th of september
at the v.a.c. gallery on 121 view street bendigo

plus, there will be a floortalk on the 20th
from 5.30 - 7.00pm

you could be inspired
you are definitely invited

'The work will teach you how to do it'

Friday 9 August 2013


this is an invitation to my exhibition 
in Bendigo
you are welcome to attend 
both the opening event 
or the floor talk
or anytime between 
the opening and closing date

if you can make it i hope you will enjoy my offering
of new and exciting work

make it a day
'The function of the artist is to provide what life does not'

Sunday 21 July 2013


for a short moment in time.....

the magnificent of still whiteness. 
A light fall of snow has left the landscape renewed. 
When, a little while later, the sun peeked through and 
slowly spread its light over field and forest  
 the world fairly sparkled with de-light.

Delight at the tranquility of the morning          
Delight at the intensity of the light
Delight at the loveliness of winter
Delight at the bird song which greeted it
Delight at the delight of the delight

It is still. Very still and immensely white. 
Our visual world seems totally renewed. 
The special effect of the silent snow falling provides a total surprise. 
As if seeing the world for the first time. 
As if seeing the world in its most wonderful pristine and innocent state. 
As if being given a new sheet of white drawing paper and asked to try once more. 
A moment of brilliant childhood in our daily rut.

Like a thick insulation blanket the snowfall absorbs most sound. 
The stillness thus produced together with the virgin whiteness, 
intensifies the effect of this newness.

What are we going to draw on this sheet of paper? 
What are we going to do with this absolute gift  of a still quiet day?

“Step outside every day. Miracles are waiting everywhere.

Thursday 11 July 2013


The Winning Bowl

Last night (July 10) at the Manningham Art Galley
(Melbourne Australia)
I was declared the winner of the very prestigious
Manningham Victorian Ceramic Art Award 2013
'The poet and the baker, both nourish the world'

Sunday 9 June 2013


Korean culture enjoys and celebrates ceramics. 
In Korea ceramics are an important part of the culture and, unlike in our culture, potters and ceramicists are respected and at times revered. There is in Korea a history of ceramics which goes back to the beginning of their civilisation and has continued until today and will continue well into the future. 
The town of i-chon in South Korea, is an important ceramic center. Every two years this fact is celebrated with an international ceramic convention, which attracts an huge Korean and international audience, both in terms of participation and observation. There are many exhibitions, workshops plus series of lectures. 
This year a new concept was added to an already impressive program. 'Talks by Artists', is a forum which introduces artists presenting their ideas in relation to their work. There are no guidelines and as a result this will be an interesting addition to the event. 
The Korean Ceramic Foundation (KOCEF) send out a brief, asking for expressions of interest and, as a result of my connection with Korea I received an invitation to submit a talk.

I felt that after having worked with clay and enjoying writing about my concepts and discoveries in relation to the medium for over forty years, I would be able to make a worthwhile contribution.
I thought a novel idea was to write in a poetic style and try to express the emotions which are at work in my ceramic making. Here is a sample:
Throughout my life, a life involved in art and ceramics and everything which is part of it, this has been a mystery to me. Something which keeps on recurring. I visit a museum and find myself standing in front of an ancient piece of ceramic ware. I respond to it. However, I do not only respond to this work on an intellectual or emotional level, although at first one would think so. My response surfaces from a deeper place. It seems to come from a level much older, much more ancient. From some aspect in our psyche which has existed from a time well before the intellect and the emotions came into play.

I wrote my artist talk and send a précis (which was requested). After a two months wait I was informed that my artist talk had been accepted. This means that I shall probably go to Korea to present my talk.

in order to share my thoughts with my community, I will also present this illustrated talk for this year's 'Words in Winter', held during august. (Saturday august 3, at 8pm, Sunday 4th august at 4pm at door3 East Street Daylesford. Plus i will present this talk as a floor talk during my exhibition in Bendigo. Wednesday 28th august, 6 p.m. at the Latrobe Art Gallery View Street, Bendigo    

"when it comes to going after what you love in life don't take no for an answer' 

Thursday 6 June 2013


 a new work
it employes an altogether new technique
using imagery from the forest

i am working for an exhibition in Bendigo
during august

the opening will be on the 15th from 6-8 pm
at the latrobe gallery in view street

then there will be a floor talk
on august the 28th
time still worked on

while i am at it
i am also presenting a talk at the daylesford word in winter event
this will be at the door3 theatre in east street
and will be illustrated 

it will be a double bill
i will perform with my god daughter
ms samara radford
who is a young doctor at the alfred hospital and 
who will relate some of her learning adventures

date: 3rd august
time: 8p.m.
date: 4th august
time: 4p.m.

this will be a great night out

come along and experience clay space

"Art exists to disturb the sleep of the world"

Wednesday 27 March 2013


on the 5th of april
i will present a talk
on simple ways of firing ceramics
ways you can employ in your own backyard

this talk will be illustrated 
with images gathered from many years 
of interest in these ways of firing

then  as, an extra, i will present a work in progress
an audio visual project i am working, on titled:
the mad mental meanderings of a lone traveler

this event will be held under the auspices of Clay Space
at door3 in east street Daylesford
on the 5th of April from 7 - 9pm

Don't audit life. Show up and make the most of it now.


Monday 11 March 2013

a paper kiln?

a paper mache kiln

on the 16th of march
i shall conducting a clay making workshop
in a beautiful setting at the foot of mt Franklin
we will make some objects to fire in a paper mache kiln

on friday evening, the 5th of April
i shall present an artist talk at the door3 venue
where you can also find the 'clay space' gallery and shop

on Saturday the 6th April
i shall be conducting a paper mache and bucket kiln 
building and firing workshop
one or tow days later we will open the kiln
to receive our rewards

if you live near Daylesford, or do not mind travelling
and you are intrested in this workshop
contact me on:

When it comes to going after what you love in life, don't
take no for an answer