Thanks to the generosity of our instructors and to the purposeful choices of founder and President Pietro Maddalena, the ceramic collection of La Meridiana growing in terms of techniques and contents. Which are the latest additions?
A collaborative piece of Richard Notkin and Jason Walker, probably a world premiere. The two artists are of different generation but with fundamental aspects of their work in common. Both are very meticulous, precise makers, with the excellence of execution an essential part of their art. Both do
express strong political, social and environmental issues.Their recent workshop at La Meridiana “Ceramic Imagery: Relief Carving and Surface Illustration” was based partly on the inspiration from the work of ceramic artists of the past: Andrea and Luca della Robbia. Within the boundaries of the bas-relief these renaissance artists created sacred imagery surrounded by luscious garlands of fruit and leaves. They developed brightly colored slips in many hues and a shimmering brilliant tin glaze, a formula that is a secret to the present day. Their work was
the subject of Richard Notkins’ studies, 30 years ago.
In their collaborative piece, Notking and Walker have placed a fish in the center of a garland made of relief tiles that carry strongly symbolic imagery. Characteristic of Jason Walkers work, the fish has a natural shape along with threatening aspects of modern technology, like imagery of destruction of nature (a bewildered Richard Notkin trying to control the fumes of an utterly destructive explosion) and riveted fins. The theme is further developed on the relief tiles: electric light bulbs illuminating natural scenery, traffic signs, skulls and feet with stigmata.