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Photo: Joe Ruckli.


Our largest community project to date.

Late in 2022, Museum of Brisbane invited people working in ceramics in the Greater Brisbane Region to submit an original ‘memory vessel’ for exhibition during Clay: Collected Ceramics and BRISBANE ART DESIGN (BAD). The Museum sought to create a temporary, site-specific and large-scale collection showcasing the diversity and vigour of current Brisbane ceramic practice. 

The idea of a ‘memory vessel’ is that it is resonant of place for its maker. Participants were urged to interpret the idea as they wished. Their vessel might be a literal representation of a place, embellished with its trees, rocks, clouds or colours; or it might hold in its material a thought or feeling, meditated upon during its creation. The only rules were that the vessel had to be original, to conform to size restraints, and to have been fired. 

It is widely felt that the practice of making ceramics has exploded across the globe over the past decade. Some of the makers featured in Commune have been working with clay for decades; some for a comparatively short time. Many wrote informative, sometimes moving and inspiring statements to accompany their ceramic pieces. Taken together, their tributes to their vessels indicate that squishy, messy clay must be humanity’s most-loved medium. It is clear that for many, having cool clay in hand is healing, grounding and exciting, filling the maker with feelings of peace, purpose and possibility all at once. 

Commune, is the community’s contribution to MoB’s Clay: Collected Ceramics, a cross-section of cultural production and a joyful celebration of the Brisbane ceramics community, here and now.

Visitor tip: You can discover the names of each artist by browsing the online collection here.

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