Adam Pottery, Stockbridge, Edinburgh
July-Aug 2012 & July-Aug 2013
"You look at it and you're wondering how and why; for that little while you are lost to the world around you.
You are totally focused on these things that you do not understand"
Steffen Dam, Glass artist
In July 2012 I purposely escaped my usual surroundings and rented a studio space at The Adam Pottery in Edinburgh to begin a new project. It was wonderful being in shared studio space again and my stay coincided with the Edinburgh Fringe, I was surrounded by colour, noise and intrigue round every corner- the city was alive!
I made contact with National Museums Scotland and they invited me to their collections site, letting me handle fantastic specimens in their archives and engage in art/science dialogues with the curators. When viewing the egg collections I was astounded by how many specimens of the same species some people collected. At first glance they all looked the same, but on closer inspection it was clear that there were subtle differences in colour, markings, size and form that would be of great worth to a serious collector.
It instantly reminded me of a family holiday where my sister and I were collecting shells on the beach. They were all the same species but every time we spotted and picked up another it would have a slightly different patterning or colouring and we just couldn't put it down, we had to have it, even when all our pockets were overflowing!
The new pieces I created focused around the tactile form of an egg, but embellished with intricate patterns and textures inspired by nature. Familiar characteristics from existing species of animals, plants, birds, insects etc. are noticeable and so create intrigue, engaging the viewer as they try to establish what the object is.
My aim was to create a childlike fascination and wonder in the viewer, encouraging imaginations to run wild!
I returned again the following year for another month-long residency, furthering this specimen collection.