Northern Rivers Community Gallery : Pieces of Eight - Equine Inspired: Susanne Fraser Ceramic art
August 27, 2014 to October 05, 2014
Small electric kiln for bisque and decals. Gas Kiln for bisque & glazing. Woodfire Kiln. Stoneware, Porcelain and Earthenware clays and paperclay. 1300 oxidation, reduction and 1100 oxidation.
2008 - Bachelor Visual Arts – Southern Cross University Lismore
2003 - Diploma of Ceramics – TAFE Northern Rivers, Lismore
1986 - 1992 University of New England Armidale NSW, Units in Archeaology, History, Paleoanthropology and Aboriginal Studies.
1963 Intermediate Certificate Kyogle High School
2005 - Sanbao Ceramic Art Institute, Jingdezhen, China: www.chinaclayart.com
2009 - Pottery Workshop Jingdezhen China & research trip to Xian & Xining: www.potteryworkshop.org/jingdezhen/residencyprogram/
2010 - International Ceramic Artist Exhibition & Workshop Gangjin, South Korea, (August 7-20)
2014 - Art & Equine Haydon Hall Murrurundi 1st May – 1st June
2014 - Craft NSW –invited ceramicist Art and the Horse 28th Jan – 16th Feb
2010 - Spirited Horses Grafton Regional Gallery 7th July – Sunday 29th August 2010
2009 - Spring Carnival, Northern Rivers Community Gallery Ballina
2008 - Spirit of Yangzhou’s Horses, Wattling Galleries Southport
2005 - Impressions - Sanbao Ceramic Art Institute, Jingdezhen, China
Selected Group Exhibitions
2014 - Proposed exhibition Pieces of Eight Northern Rivers Community Gallery Ballina Aug-Sept
2014 - Proposed - Saphire 45th Brisbane Grammar School Art Show – invitation only – 22nd & 23rd August
2014 - John Villers Waltzing Matilda Outback Art Show - 5th may – 11th July
2014 - Feb 28 6th April with Raglan at GAUGE 68 Glebe Pt Rd. Sydney
2013 - Amsterdam Art Fair with Retrospect Planet Byron Bay
2013 - Brussels & Milan Affordable Art Fair with Retrospect Planet Byron Bay
2013 - Table Manners – Group Show curated by Suvira McDonald - Northern Rivers Community Gallery Ballina Oct 2 – 27th
2012 - Stockholm Art Fair with Retrospect Planet Byron Bay Nov.
2012 - Table Manners – Group Show curated by Suvira McDonald Northern Rivers Community Gallery Ballina May 2nd – 27th
2012 - Dragons Back – Group Show, Tweed River Art Gallery, and 23rd March – 6th May tweed.nsw.gov.au/ArtGallery/ArtGalleryComingExhibitionsHome.aspx
2011 - Northern Style – Group Show -,Ceramics, Cudgegong Gallery, Gulgong, 2nd December 2011. – 30th January 2012
2011 - Artisans in the Garden, Lion Gate Lodge, Royal Botanical Gardens Sydney, 8th Oct – 16th Oct.
2010 - Border Art Prize Exhibition, Tweed River Art Gallery 3 December 2010 - 23 January 2011.
2010 - SOFA Chicago November 5-7.
2010 - Swallowing Clouds Northern Rivers Communities Gallery Ballina, September 4th – Oct 10th .
2010 - International Ceramic Artist Exhibition & Workshop Gangjin, South Korea August 7-20.
2009 - Post Cards Alumni Exhibition, Next Gallery SCU, Lismore
2008 - Guardians of Empress Wu, Art & Culture Exhibition, Byron Bay
FEHVA 48 hrs of Art Bangalow A&I Hall –
FEHVA 48 hrs of Art Bangalow A&I Hall –
Footprints – NEXT Art Gallery, Southern Cross University, Lismore
Stanthorpe Art Prize Exhibition - Stanthorpe Art Gallery, Stanthorpe
2007 - Transition Graduation Show Southern Cross University, Lismore
Diversity Dialogues: - The Alleyway Gallery –Lismore
2004 - Regional Treasures – ‘Pamela’ Lismore Regional Gallery, Lismore NSW
‘Bowl’d & Beautiful’ –‘3 Colours Ash’- Ceramic Art Gallery, Paddington
2003 - Thursday Plantation Sculpture Show - 'Tree of Life'
Grafton Regional Gallery
Gangjin Celadon Porcelain Festival Museum, South Korea
Byron Shire Council, Byron Bay NSW
Various private collections
When challenged, artist Sue Fraser finds it hard to remember a time when she wasn’t altogether enamoured with horses. As a young girl, her mind imagined every new horizon as a place to explore at a gallop. Sue’s first horse, a good-natured, big-bellied pony named Daphne, was a fourth birthday gift. A fall from Daphne’s back in her youth resulted in a broken wrist but didn’t diminish Sue’s girlish passion. Ten years ago, however, a nasty accident finally forced this keen horsewoman to abandon competitive riding. After taking up University study, Sue successfully completed her Visual Arts Degree and simultaneously discovered an enthusiasm for the expressive qualities of clay. This combined with her innate fondness for horses has meant both interests now lie at the centre of her contemporary practice.
In recent years, ongoing experimentation with materials and a developing fascination with Chinese art history has been driven by Sue’s continuing exploration of the complex human-horse relationship. A particular focus is the familiar social and spiritual bond between women and horses. Although recognised in popular culture from the 1944 Oscar winning film National Velvet, to the My Little Pony toy franchise and Australian novelist Elyne Mitchell’s Silver Brumby series (a favourite of the artist), this affiliation has often been overlooked in academic research. Myths that equate the kinship between women and horses to a romantic ideal or a quest for female sexual dominance are plentiful. Sue, however, remains unconvinced that these theories provide all the answers. The desire for freedom expressed in the act of riding, alongside the contrasting qualities of fragility and strength possessed by both horses and women, are two themes found at the heart of her art.
Through her art Sue is intent on exploring the deep mysteries and ancient links in the relationship. Spurred on by a residency and subsequent workshop in Jingdezhen (China), a subject of her latest work has developed around research into Chinese art history. Dating back to the cultural freedoms of the Tang Dynasty in 7 – 10th century China, women have been portrayed in equine art and sculpture. Centuries before it became common in Western civilisation, women in China were illustrated riding astride their horses. Poses and facial expressions in the arts increasingly conveyed the strength and valour of individual personalities, both equine and human.
Drawing together all these threads, Sue’s horses enact gender issues through the adoption of concepts from traditional Chinese equine figures. Created in different sizes and a range of colours the stylised equine sculptures and vessels are often adorned with decorative elements – particularly plant and floral motifs borrowed from Chinese culture for their symbolic value. In earthy browns, intense oranges, and handsome blue/green shades, Sue experiments with luminous glazes all mixed by hand. Each artisan sculpture of clay may also be festooned with a floral mane, plaited tail or embellished with a cobalt blue and white blanket. The latter traditional blend of colours is said to have had its first Chinese use in Jingdezhen.
Layers of meaning and cultural connection are initiated by the artist’s choice of colour and decoration. Sue also continues the Chinese tradition of naming each horse according to its character and decoration. While reflecting the artist’s affection for each individual sculpture it also captures something of each personality.