Eighteen stoneware towers, which disassemble for domestic use, have won one of the major Visual Arts awards at the Monmouthshire and Distrcit 2016 National Eisteddfod of Wales.
The selectors Rachel Conroy, Helen Sear and Anthony Shapland were unanimous in their decision to award the Gold Medal for Craft and Design to ceramic artist Lisa Krigel. She also receives the full monetary prize of £5,000, given by the James Pantyfedwen Foundation.
Said Rachel Conroy: “Lisa Krigel’s ceramics are a revelation – so different to previous bodies of work by the artist and a harmony of artistic vision, technical skill and exemplary design".
“The stacked, hand-thrown vessels – mezze and breakfast bowls, tea and coffee pots, cups and plates – are at once stark and strikingly beautiful. At first glance, suggestions of function – a handle or spout – might present themselves, but these are sculptural objects; architectural stoneware towers. Grouped together on sleeper-like oak boards, they create a tabletop cityscape. Glazes move through flat greys and steely blues to warmer buff colours, reflecting the concrete structures that inspired them. When disassembled, piece-by-piece, into their individual component parts, their practical purposes are slowly revealed. They are objects that invite touch and interaction. I would love to use them".
Helen Sear added: " Lisa Krigel’s work is a visual delight. Form and function synthesise perfectly, through her crafting of clay and glaze, as beautiful kitchenware stacks up as domestic sculpture. Her configurations defy the saccharin and decorative.
“It is the synthesis of the monumental structures that inform her pieces, and their domestic scale make the work such a strong statement. It appears that all her past influences have collided into these unique works that have the enjoyment of both play and food at their centre.”
Lisa Krigel, from New York remembers visiting sky scrapers under construction with her architect father. She came to Wales in 1999 and established a studio at Firworks, Cardiff. Recently her work has been informed by architcture and photographs of water towers adorn her workplace.