Jennifer Halli | Clay
There is something significant about a move to a foreign country, especially when you are old enough to adopt it as home yet naïve enough for it to shape your character.
As a young adult, I moved to New Zealand; a land of contrasts that offered me a pluralistic view of the world and continues to fascinate me.
Imprints of New Zealand’s ecosystem grew in my mind as I gathered the knowledge I now use to create analogous, biologically resonant structures in clay. I strive to capture a moment in the transition of life, of travel, through the exploration of abstraction. The objects that represent seeds, plants, and fossils are drawn from an antipodean natural world and presented with a touch of ambiguity.
One work informs another in my process, causing a sequence to occur. A piece grows out of the previous while laying groundwork for the next. A sense of wholeness develops and informs the preoccupations in my work: cycles, generations, replication, homology and patterns. The work evolves naturally, organically, a genesis of form. Art allows us to create our own laws.
Artifacts are made
In essence, I am creating various versions of the same thing. Not to compete with, but to seek the beauty found in the engineering of nature.
Having spent many years as a self-taught metalsmith, Jennifer started working in clay during a decade long spell of living in New Zealand. Looking to hone her wheel and wood firing skills, she moved to Australia and apprenticed to Robert Barron, in Kardella, VIC.
Following on from chasing wombats, travels took Jennifer back to the USA where she was introduced to the American craft scene by way of The Center for Craft, Creativity & Design; here she was able to mentor the next generation of makers.
When spreadsheets became too much, ceramic sculptor Peter Callas was in need of an assistant. Taking finely tuned skills from Rob and throwing them out the window at Peter’s, it was time for graduate school. Today, when not traveling whenever and wherever possible, Jennifer spends her time at University of Massachusetts|Dartmouth as a Distinguished Art Fellow.
She has been invited to firings and exhibitions throughout the USA, Australia, Denmark and New Zealand.