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I am not interested in the random and the spontaneous. I want to be better than a lathe, more plastic than plastic.
John Parker, 1987
With their precise shapes and patterns, the bowls and bottles in this exhibition show John Parker’s interest in creating works that give the illusion of mass production. Each piece is handmade, but looks like it came from a factory mould.
Parker is one of New Zealand’s most distinctive ceramic artists. Throughout his 50-year career, he has favoured the simple lines and clean edges of modernism. Industrial forms, Crown Lynn pottery, and opera are among the influences on his work.
A 2007 residency in China inspired Parker to explore different techniques, including decorating with decals – like the goldfish on the bottle shown. In China, Parker experienced the epiphany that his work was playing ‘a small part in the continuum of ceramic history.’