Closing this Saturday is Naomi Yasui's solo exhibition at ESP Project Space:
Chapter IV: Painting with Fire is a collection of ceramic vessels and photographs produced during a residency in Skælskør, Denmark. These forms look to historical Japanese ceramics fired in atmospheric kilns. The firing process dictates the form, a means to capture the mysterious and erratic colours that emerge when unglazed clay meets fire. Elongated and bulbous forms were created to best capture the effects of firing and cooling with natural materials, while embracing the uncertainty of this method. Yasui’s conceptual practice revolves around process, form, and happenstance. The products of experimentation are exhibited as remains alongside finished pieces, allowing the viewer to glimpse and judge the artist’s edits.
The title of this exhibition is borrowed from an instructional ceramic book titled Soda, Clay, Fire by Gail Nichols, a text Yasui referenced frequently while experimenting with atmospheric firing. Accompanying the sculptures are photographic works that explore traditional ceramic documentation and play with these aesthetic choices. When three-dimensional objects are flattened by photographs, the viewer is forced to observe them from only one perspective. This relationship between perception and reality again explores what the artist decides to reveal.