STUDIO INTERNSHIP - JULY 2023
Esteemed multidisciplinary artist Jan Ernst has initiated an annual internship that pushes the envelope by inviting external talents to delve into ceramics, departing from traditional norms. This internship introduces a fresh approach to creativity and cross-disciplinary exploration.
In its debut edition, the Jan Ernst Internship proudly welcomed Arnelle Woker, a gifted designer and illustrator, to partake in an immersive month-long experience that aimed to bridge the gap between ceramics and contemporary design. Ernst's vision underscores the importance of diverse collaborations and knowledge-sharing for artistic growth. This program embodies this philosophy, ushering in new perspectives to redefine the realm of creative expression.
The central theme of this year's internship revolved around the creation of sculptural vessels. Arnelle's journey began with an extensive immersion in the outdoors, collecting found objects from beaches and forests. These artifacts were dissected and studied in the studio, culminating in an emphasis on the delicate allure of sea shells that would serve as the basis for a compelling collection.
An intriguing aspect of the narrative interwoven into each piece, draws inspiration from Botticelli's iconic masterpiece, "The Birth of Venus." This reinterpretation draws parallels between the emergence of Venus from the sea and the transformative power embedded in artistic creation. The use of plaster, featuring a wire mesh structure, mirrors the resilience and elegance of mussel shells, lending the collection a serene aesthetic.
Arnelle's creative journey unfolded through a series of innovative steps. Beginning with object collection and meticulous studio analysis, it progressed to the construction of maquettes and intricate plaster-and-steel-mesh sculptures. The final pieces were impeccably documented through photography, encapsulating the essence of the internship's commitment to pushing the boundaries of traditional ceramic art.
Complementing the primary project, the Jan Ernst Internship encompassed an array of artistic ventures including research for the studio, linocuts that informed a new rug design, a visit to a bronze foundry, installation of a interior mural, hand-painting of sculptures, crafting clay vessels, and mastering texture application. These diverse activities underline the program's dedication to fostering holistic artistic exploration and growth.
Central to the Jan Ernst Internship's ethos is the celebration of female energy and the empowerment of women in the arts. This sentiment permeated the residency, fostering an environment that is not only innovative and intellectually enriching but also deeply supportive and inclusive.