Hayley West (SOLD)

calling things what they are is harder than it looks, 2021

35 cm
In my work as an artist, I draw on wide-ranging interests; in botany, geology, anthropology and the history of art, as well as on my background in design. Against this conceptual framework, I sift through my internal landscape, seeking to understand myself and my place in the world through the materiality of ceramics. The sculptural forms which emerge combine wheel and hand-formed objects with everyday detritus such as discarded rubber bands, forgotten string and lost objects.

Calling things what they are is harder than it looks is a ceramic arrangement designed as an image, raising questions about what is seen from one elevation, and what can be discovered when viewed from multiple perspectives. I’m curious about the tingling in-between places, the negative space, waiting to be discovered. To me, there is both whimsy and gravitas in this examination of our relationship to our environment, objects and our psychological relationship to ourselves and the world. Despite its designed beginnings, the finished pieces are the result of process: conversations between artist and materials, between clay and glaze.

The objects in the arrangement are forged from a palette of earth, oxides and chemical elements to create something permanent, and yet easily fragmented. Future artefacts, in the present they call for philosophical inquiry.
Hayley is an artist, designer and educator born in Orange on Wiradjuri land and currently lives and works on Gadigal land, Newtown, Sydney. She has a BA Fine Arts from UNSW Art & Design (then COFA). Upon completion of this degree, time was spend working and travelling overseas before returning to Sydney and entering a BA Interior and Spatial Design, graduating with first-class honours, from UTS. In 2010 Hayley co-founded Smith and Carmody, a multidisciplinary design partnership working on projects such as Cornersmith in Marrickville and Brickfields in Chippendale before leaving the business to focus on other areas. Hayley’s fine art and design background progressed to a ceramics practice. From 2014 – 2020 she worked as a ceramics technician and tutor at Pine Street Creative Arts Centre (City of Sydney) – overseeing the technical running of the studio and teaching a large number of adult and children’s workshops. During this time Hayley assisted on several glaze technology workshops and masters workshops such as sculpting with Helen Leete, slip-casting with Somchai Charoen and Printing on Ceramics with Petra Svoboda. In 2018 Hayley worked as a tutor at Makerspace & Co in Marrickville teaching Introductory workshops under the guidance of Xavier Modoux and assisting on several Master workshops with Anthony Brink. Presently Hayley conducts workshops and from her home studio Wells Street Studio in Newtown where she teaches several all-age classes in both wheel throwing and hand-building whilst working on developing works for exhibition and domestic ware for sale.
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