The works in this exhibition were produced as a result of Wedd's experiences as an Artist-in-Residence at Sofitel Melbourne On Collins in 2015. As he explains:
On the last day of our stay at the Sofitel we went to the David Bowie exhibition at the Australian Centre for the Moving Image (ACMI). That set me thinking about the transient experience of living in luxury in a differnt room every second (or third) night. The exemplar recording of this phenomenon is D.A. Pennebaker's documentary from 1967, "Dont Look Back" where he followed Dylan's tour of the UK. When David Bowie died in 2016 I went down the wormhole of Bowie's chequered late career reflecting more and more on his transient 'glam' lifestyle. These urns and jars are a reflection on that life of luxury and glamour and are kind of sentinels to that life.
Despite initially training as a jeweller, Gerry Wedd (b. 1957) holds a Masters Degree in Ceramics and enjoys a significant national reputation largely for his hand-built ceramic vessels that recall the forms of Ancient Creek and Etruscan pottery alongside the illustrative design of British 18th century Willow Ware.
Wedd's ceramics steer away from the traditional 'nice' patterns and forms often associated with pottery to an art that explores both humour and darkness drawing on the social mores and diverse marratives found in contemporary Australian life.
Living on South Australia's Fleurieu Peninsula with his family, it is the sea and seaside recreation that is often explored in his work. As a keen surfer one of his many jobs was working as a designer for the surfwear company Mambo from the late 1980s until 2006 and it was here that he designed amongst other items ceramics, textiles and clothing.
Wedd exhibits nationally and internationally. His works are held in collections such as the National Gallery Australia, Melbourne Maritime Museum (Polly Woodside) and the Powerhouse Museum in Sydney. In 2010 he was Australia's representative in the Havana Biennial Cuba and also won the Hobart Art Prize for Ceramics. In 2014 he was a finalist in the Basil Sellers Art Prize for Sport and in 2015 spent the early part of the year at the Australia Council studio in London.
Sofitel Melbourne On Collins
October 2017 - January 2018