There’s something humble and unrefined about Sarah Jerath’s pottery, something rudimentary.
I first came across this makers’ work while scrolling through someone’s instagram feed, someone who was holding an auction to raise funds for the Australian Red Cross this past January as fires burned across New South Wales and Victoria. People from all over the world were donating items for the event but an image of a small black pot caught my eye; the way the light fell across its’ rough blackened surface. And damn it, if I’d had enough cash I’d have put a bid in on it. But others had beaten me to it. So I did the next best thing by finding her instagram account.
Sarah is from Lancashire in the UK and although she has oodles of followers on instagram she has yet to develop a website; probably because she’s too busy making gorgeous ceramics. But she was very kind to take time out of her busy schedule to answer a couple of my questions via instragram about her education and process…
She studied ceramics at UCLAN, Lancashire specializing in silicate research. Silicate research? I hear you ask. Yes, it’s an area of study that according to the UCLAN’s website is ‘firmly rooted in Ceramics. However, its research extends beyond materials that purely fit within the ‘standard’ classification of ceramic materials. Research interests involve related materials such as Glass, Refractory Concretes and Concrete itself. The common or unifying ‘sub-material’ found within all these materials is Silica – hence the term ‘Silicate Research’. Kind of technical but I’m guessing the research is about finding ways to use waste materials like broken glass and smashed concrete and reconstituting them into functional products like these tiles.
And nooooww I can see where Sarah’s pieces express that mixing of materials in a ceramic base and their gorgeous bumpy textures.
When I asked her about what drives her conceptually she said that some of her work is functional while other pieces ‘are pure materiality’. Others she says are art pieces which usually combine the two, and she added that ‘research and expression can lead to new outcomes’. Ummm, yes I’d have to agree.
Now, feast your eyes on her work and tell me how beautiful it is…