Phoebe Cummings Sculptures of Fragility, Time and Decay
Phoebe Cummings works exclusively with clay in its raw form, creating transitory sculptures and installations which gradually change over time. Often large in scale and site-responsive, her works consider the performative qualities of clay.
Cummings produces intricate, detailed works which draw on representations of nature within art history, rather than scientific accuracy. During her 2010 residency at the Victoria & Albert Museum, she developed an installation based on natural forms found in printed and painted patterns from the museum collection. As part of her Camden Arts Centre Ceramics Fellowship in 2013, Cummings created a temporary work in the garden exploring the natural formation of clay through the weathering of rocks.
Cummings’ work references the inherent natural properties of clay, and the natural cycle of life and death. After an exhibition is over, the wet clay she has delicately configured into decorative forms is then returned to its amorphous state, to be used again for a new work. In 2017, she was awarded the inaugural Woman’s Hour Craft Prize for her unique approach to working with clay.
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