Reflections of Italy: in time and place

Victor Greenaway

For me, it is the idea that is the principal element; the material, while still important as a carrier of that idea, is of less consequence. Accordingly, in this collection of work, similar themes and ideas are displayed across the various media of clay, painting, and ink.

During our 10-year residency in Italy, we lived in a Medieval hill-top town that rises over Etruscan ruins, trimmed with Renaissance overlays. This was a daily source of inspiration and, combined with long traipses through ancient Roman ruins and frequent visits to Venice, the creative process was enriched further by introducing new elements of colour and pictorial expressions to both the ceramics and the two-dimensional works on canvas and on paper.

The two-dimensional works clearly reflect the long association (that continues today) in close city dwelling, being constantly in touch with people, their lives and customs, traditions, and daily routines. Through the piazzas, palazzi and stunning vistas, stimulus comes from everywhere.

The latest porcelain work in particular shows the influence of Venice with a fine imagery chasing abstract shapes around the form, picking up echoes of the colourful mooring poles, the atmosphere of carnevale and the constant splash of water as it patterns the quayside and slaps against the ever-moving hulls. In other forms, the surfaces emulate the smoothness of marble on classical forms, the dynamics created through light and shade, modelled through the use of indentations and various surfaces and colours. The translucency of the porcelain contributes to this by passing light through thin linear markings and fine edges.

Victor Greenaway’s Limited Edition Publication “Victor Greenaway : Ceramics 1965-2005″ encompasses the past 40 years of the artists’ work, revealing the strengths, diversity and refinement that he seeks. Comprising 140 pages including 110 colour plates, biographical notes and bibliography – the limited edition books are numbered and signed by the artist.

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