Offering an intimate insight into the mechanics of her making, Maud & Mabel are honoured to share an exhibition of works by acclaimed Belgian ceramicist Ann Van Hoey, who has created an exquisite collection of hand-built vessels, boasting sleek, expressive forms in a harmonious blend of quiet tones and rich touches of colour.
After a successful career as a commercial engineer, Van Hoey graduated with a degree in Ceramics from the Institute for Arts and Craft in Mechelen in 2006, became a member of the International Academy of Ceramics in 2011 and has since had her work exhibited in countless exhibitions world-wide, including South Korea, China, Switzerland, Croatia, the USA, Italy, Taiwan, to name a few. She has had work selected for many international competitions and received numerous awards, most recently the rank of Commander in the Order of the Crown by Belgium’s King Philippe for her achievements as a ceramic artist, made all the more remarkable considering her relatively short professional ceramic career.
Taking the geometry of Japanese zen gardens as inspiration, alongside the art of origami, Van Hoey’s visionary technique of cutting and reassembling perfectly moulded forms has seen her create an exciting portfolio of endlessly unique origami-eqsue sculptural works of art. In a slight departure from her usual vibrant race car reds and electric blues, Van Hoey has created a collection of sultry tones, with, of course, one burst of bold colour, a palette inspired by Maud & Mabel’s portfolio along with the changing of the seasons.
This thoughtful collection celebrates the delicate qualities and boundless quirks and quiddities of Van Hoey’s work. Poetic forms crafted in stoneware, earthenware and porcelain are finished in a variety of techniques including engobe slips, contrasting interiors and the application of surface texture, allowing these unique forms and their many faces to capture light and shadow with a softness that embraces crisp edges and bold silhouettes.
Whilst Ann Van Hoey’s background in commercial engineering sees that her practice is foregrounded by mathematical and scientific precision, she states that the cutting and altering of the pieces has become an increasingly organic and free process, particularly in the making of this collection.
Ann’s technical knowledge combined with a progressively free approach to her practice results in a collection of works that playfully teeter on the line between refined structure and poetic movement, a harmony of form which seems at once both grounded and somewhat illogically balanced.