The Oxford English Dictionary defines a seed as “The unit of reproduction of a flowering plant, capable of developing into another such plant” another meaning of the word is “the cause or latent beginning of a feeling, process, or condition.” Sarah Rayner’s latest work in porcelain encompasses both these meanings. Delicate, pure white porcelain pods defy the term handbuilt yet that is how they are formed. Shaped like pods, seeds, twigs and stamens these sculptures morph from familiar to deeply strange as the viewer is drawn through the groups of objects. The satin, white terra sigillata surface highlights the tiny pinholes covering the outside of the pods. Viewed individually the sculptures reveal hidden details, tiny, beautiful clefts and crevices, a speckling of fine pinholes, interior cavities filled with miniscule, porcelain balls. Grouped, the sculptures draw you in, pulling you from one mysterious object to the next, capturing the sense of wonder and discovery found in beach combing or foraging.
– Shannon Garson, Hidden Worlds – The Art of Sarah Rayner, The Journal of Australian Ceramics, vol. 57, no.2 Exploring Place.
Sarah Rayner’s artwork is an exploration of micro botanical detail using combinations of traditional craft techniques and materials. Closely identifying with Australian native plants, Sarah’s interest in form, texture and pattern is expressed through obsessive repetition and detail. Her work is presented as collections of biomorphic sculptural objects informed and inspired by the intricate, often complex, structures found in the reproductive organs of native plants as well as an interest is museology.
Sarah undertook her Honors degree in 1997 at the University of Southern Queensland majoring in Textiles and went on to Lecture in this field for over 10 years. She has exhibited locally, nationally and internationally and has public artworks commissioned by the Brisbane city council in Melbourne Street, West End and in the Mater Private Hospital, Springfield. Primarily a textile artist Sarah has recently begun to use porcelain as a medium from which to translate observations of her local environment in the bushland of Maleny, Queensland.
Porcelain has a duality…fragility and strength…with an almost bone like quality which make it a perfect medium in which to represent her translations of the natural world.