Wednesday, 28 March 2012

Interview with Sonya Viney


Can you tell me a little about your work

I use objects that are usually considered rubbish to others and employ many processes to develop ‘found’ mass produced pieces. Everyday containers are transformed; cast in ‘white gold,’ commonly known as porcelain. Often pieces have precious inclusions, which create unique marks in the firing process or are explored in Pâte-de-Verre glass, raku and smoke firing.
I explore the notion of ‘still life’ within ceramics. My work is inspired by multiples and repetition, whether it is an accumulation of everyday objects inside a kitchen cupboard or an ordered display in a museum.

What have you been up to since you graduated from De Montfort University last June?

Following the degree show I was selected to exhibit at New Designers, London. A  few weeks later an ambitious plan came to fruition when I was part of a group of seven DMU graduate ceramicists who presented themselves as ‘ De Montfort Emerging Talent’ at Art in Action. The feedback we received from the general public gave us lots of encouragement; we all really enjoyed the experience and the opportunity to talk about our making processes.

I believe you were selected as ‘Young Meteor’ for Lustre, Contemporary Craft Market 2011, what was it like having a stand alongside longstanding makers?

It was really exciting to take part in ‘Lustre’ the building had been newly refurbished and it was a lovely space to exhibit in. The other makers were really supportive and it felt very professional. I was thrilled because I sold a lot of my work during the weekend.

Have there been any other opportunities since leaving university that you’d care to tell us about?

I was involved in The British Ceramics Biennial 2011 (BCB) where I was selected amongst its complement of 40 ‘Fresh’ ceramicists from the last two years.  Myself and two other DMU graduates won places to exhibit at ‘Fresh’ at the original Spode factory site last year. Consequentially an image of my work appeared in Craft magazine Sept/Oct2011 in an article by Tristram Hunt who debated the future of Stoke and the ceramic industry.

So what are your plans for 2012?

The year got off to sharp start setting up ‘Designer Crafts’ at The Mall, London in the first week of January.
I’ve agreed to be part of ‘The Collective’ in March at the The Atkins Building in Hinckley, which is becoming an annual event of Design Craft graduates from De Montfort University. 
In June,  I am exhibiting at Earth and Fire 2012, Rufford and I am currently developing work for my first solo exhibition ‘Fragile’ which will be at the Wallner Gallery Lakeside Arts Centre Nottingham between July and August 2012.
And this week have just received an invitation as part of ‘The Ceramic Collective’ to return to Art in Action this summer, where Rebecca Fraser, Aimee Fisher, Katherine Staples and myself will exhibit and demonstrate making processes in the Ceramics Tent!

It must be very exciting to have a solo exhibition, how did that come about?

Yes, you are right I still can’t believe it! This came about by kind invitation of Lesley Beale Craft Co-ordinator and curator of ‘Lustre’. She felt that my newly developed framed ‘still lifes’ would be suited to Wallner Gallery. This gives me the opportunity to play with the scale of work and at the moment I am planning a large focal still-life as part of the ‘Fragile’ exhibition.

Thank you Sonya for agreeing to be interviewed.  Good Luck with all your events this year, and hopefully I will be able to come and see you at a few of them.

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