” I’ve always thought of myself as living in a landscape, perhaps its because I’ve never lived in a city or even a town for longer than a few months. The events of the landscape draw me towards it. My works explore my engagement with its moods, its changes and dramas. They speak of harsh dry windswept lands, of the shimmering distance beneath brooding skies. A passing moment of mystery and wonderment captured by the eye and embedded in memory.” … Jeff Mincham, 2007
His practice, largely influenced by the ancient Japanese technique Raku which he has both taught and followed, depends on temperature and fire. Having worked with this method for near on two decades, Mincham, impressively, moved to another way of working in the mid 1990s, focussing on drawing from the local scenery.
Mincham’s rigorous early training with both Milton Moon at the South Australian School of Art and Les Blakebrough at the Tasmanian School of Art is evident in his disciplined approach to technique and form. But the maverick spirit which drew him to the highly unpredictable field of raku is alive and well.
‘Summer Grasses I’ – thrown, multiglazed ceramic form with brushwork.
‘Edge Of The Tides’ – hand built, multifired ceramic tea bowl.
Jeff Mincham is one of Australia’s most prominent and long established ceramic artists and for thirty years his practice has been influenced by the remarkable landscape setting of his home in the Adelaide Hills. His beautifully resolved vessels contain a visible dialogue between the artist and the environment in which he lives and works, a narrative that is particularly resonant within the ceramic medium which is of the earth but shaped by human hands. The highly tactile surfaces of these vessels are the result of a unique patination process that Jeff refers to as ‘firing and weathering at the same time’. “The colours, moods, textures and events comprise a universe of constant change which retains a seamless, constant identity and provides an inexhaustible source for my forms and their surface treatments. The works are often fired many times to achieve the depth of surface and unique character that they finally attain and many do not survive the journey. However, I have survived a long journey myself to arrive at a point of strong resolution in my work and I conclude that it is the constant struggle that produces the best results.”
He has held over 40 solo shows across Australia, and exhibited in the USA, Asia and Europe. His ceramics have been widely collected and are represented in the National Gallery of Australia and most major state and regional galleries. Jeff’s work is also held in many overseas collections such as the Aberystwyth Arts Centre (Wales), Johnson Collection (USA), Silber Collection (USA), National Gallery of Malaysia, State of Hawaii Public Collection and Taipei Fine Arts Museum (Taiwan).
‘Day into night’ – multiglazed and multifired elliptical vessel.
From an interview with Karen Finch ( Craft Australia ): Growing up in a rural environment, he says, conditioned him to deal with the landscape and it remains the most common basis for his work. The impact of Japanese style, techniques and philosophies has influenced the way he looks at the landscape and reinterprets it in clay. He is preoccupied with the mutability of his surroundings, monitoring natural events, how objects grow, die and rot – the cycles and processes of the natural world. The combination of a solid form, most often a vessel form, and a figured surface becomes a metaphor for the idea of shifting changes over an underlying structure. Decorative motifs in his work have gradually become more abstract as he searches for the means to communicate the essence of the landscape rather than use the surface of the form merely as a three dimensional canvas. Textures, colours and varied surfaces vie with each other to create a sense of the inherent conflict between order and disorder within the landscape, conveying messages of emotional communication to the viewer.
Lichen – thrown, hand built, multifired ceramic bowl.
‘Pelagic memoire (bowl)’ – 2009
‘First Rains’ – coil built, elliptical ceramic form with carved image.
‘Hill Views’ – multiglazed and multifired elliptical vessel.
‘Windswept Hillside’ – elliptical carved vessel.
‘Out of the East ‘- 2012
‘Home of the curfew’. 2009
‘A Grey Dawn Breaking’ – Jeff Mincham – 2012
( Sabbia Gallery )
‘Estuary’ – multi glazed oval vessel.
‘Reconstructed landscape I’ – multiglazed rectangular faceted vessel.
‘Transit Variations’ 2012
‘The Marshlands’ – 2009