‘Stories in Clay’ is a celebration of the Arthur Merric Boyd Pottery (AMB) studios, which were established in the Melbourne suburb of Murrumbeena in 1944 by artists Arthur Boyd and John Perceval, with philosopher and artist Peter Herbst.
Together the trio set out to produce functional domestic wares to meet the demands of post-war manufacture and by the late 1940s the studio’s innovations turned to the creation of colourful, experimental and vibrant one-off earthenware pieces from coffee and tea sets to bowls and plates, carafes, jugs, decanter sets and vases adorned with angels, beasts and portraits as well as Australian flora and fauna motifs and unique coffee tables decorated with tiles.
Author and local historian Colin Smith notes, ‘The AMB Pottery produced some of the most original ceramics ever made in this country. The artists who worked there weren’t influenced by tradition or by the styles of the of the times, and felt free to create whatever forms, shapes and designs they wanted. Magic was made at the AMB and we are all so much richer for it.’
Curated by Diane Soumilas, ‘Stories in Clay’ presents a vibrant showcase of works by major Australian artists including Arthur, Perceval, Neil Douglas, Yvonne Boyd and associated potters on loan from the National Gallery of Victoria, Heide Museum of Modern Art, Shepparton Art Museum and from other private collections, and includes a selection of earthenware tiles and ceramic sculptures by Arthur alongside Perceval’s ceramic angel sculptures and many other related works.
A dynamic series of public programs are scheduled throughout the exhibition including a walking tour of Murumbeena with Colin Smith sharing engaging insight to the history of AMB Pottery and the Boyd family.
Glen Eira City Council Gallery
Until 15 December 2019