December 2012

by Patsy Hely, President

It has been a busy few months for TACA. Firstly there was the migration to Adelaide for the Australian Ceramic Triennale, then we were busy writing letters about the woeful cuts to TAFE ceramics and visual arts areas and last week a panel met to consider the entries for The Trudie Alfred Bequest Ceramic Scholarships.

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August 2012

by Patsy Hely, President

TACA has a very broad constituency, one that encompasses practitioners with different interests, motivations and ambitions, and lovers of ceramics from all walks of life. We currently have a number of projects on the go that aim to meet the needs of a variety of members and these include, importantly, two providing financial and other opportunities for students of ceramics:

The current issue of the Journal invites applications for The Trudie Alfred Bequest Ceramic Scholarships 2013. In administering this second round of scholarships we pay tribute to the late Trudie Alfred who bequeathed TACA a significant fund to support ceramic education.

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June 2012

by Patsy Hely, President

TACA is currently focusing on a number of issues, some related to The Journal, and some to the Association.

The Association is busy organizing its contributions to the 13th Australian Ceramics Triennale being held in Adelaide this September. Firstly, we hope many of you will submit work to the members’ VASE exhibition. You can find all of the details on via the Association pages. Go to ‘members exhibition’ link. Note the closing date for an expression of interest is 30 July 2012.

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April 2012

by Patsy Hely, President

What a good night! JAC’s 50th celebrations at Manly AG&M at the end of January went off really well. Fifty years of publication represents a fantastic achievement and to everyone who has had a hand in the journal over the years, well deserved the plaudits and goodwill flowing on the night. It was great to see so many there including some who have been involved with JAC since its very early days, Margaret Tuckson, Peter Rushforth and more – along with past (and present) editors, contributors and readers.  And, it was just great to catch up with lots of old pals, and see everyone else doing the same.

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February 2012

by Patsy Hely, President

The end of 2011 saw the very successful opening at Manly Art Gallery and Museum (MAGM) of the members’ exhibition, The Narrative Knot and the exhibition to mark The Journal of Australian Ceramics 50th anniversary, PROmotion. Thanks very much to curators, Gerry Wedd and Dee Taylor-Graham, for their work and to the staff at Manly for their, as usual, very generous and professional support.

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December 2011

by Patsy Hely, President

H.G. Nelson will be the guest speaker at the opening of the Association’s biennial member’s exhibition The Narrative Knot on Friday 2 December, and that will be a nicely humorous note with which to see out the end of the year. The opening will be at 6pm at Manly Art Gallery and Museum and it will be great to see the work of members and to catch up with and thank the curator, Adelaide’s Gerry Wedd, for the really good job he has done.

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August 2011

by Patsy Hely, President

I’ll start my report this month by welcoming Elisa Bartels who has been working a day a week with Vicki in the TACA office. Volume 50/2 of the Journal is hot off the press with a focus on ceramics + utility, tableware and Woodfire TAS 2011. As well, it’s the annual Education Survey issue and it’s heartening to see such a great spread of energetic student work. Elisa and Vicki have just sent out copies to over 30 TAFEs and University departments and included brochures detailing The Trudie Alfred Bequest open now to student applications and closing on 21 September.

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June 2011

by Patsy Hely, President

We’ve been lucky, here in Canberra, to have had the opportunity to see recently a fantastic exhibition: Itarra murrakipinni-ingingaminni purrarpulirri Ngura kutjara – wangka mantanguru ‘Two communities – the language of clay. Ceramics by Tiwi artist Robert Puruntatameri and Ernabella Artists, Alison (Milyika) Carroll, Carol (Anilyuru) Williams and Malpiya (Irpintiri) Davey were featured. The work was made during residencies in Canberra, by Robert at Straithnairn Arts Association (where the exhibition was held), and the other artists at the ANU School of Art. The exhibition came about as part of a project organised by Head of the Ceramics Workshop, Janet DeBoos and the work included thrown and hand-built pieces, all with beautifully rendered patterning and imagery.

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April 2011

by Patsy Hely, President

The last few weeks have been sad ones with the passing away of two senior members of the ceramic community, Shigeo Shiga (1928 – 2011) and Bernard Sahm (1926 – 2011). Shiga and Bernard made significant contributions to Australian ceramics, providing inspiration and generously sharing their skills and knowledge with legions of students and practitioners. The Association has sent its condolences to Shiga’s family and to Bernard’s family and expressed appreciation for the roles the two played in enlivening and helping develop ceramics in this country. They will be remembered with much fondness.

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February 2011

by Patsy Hely, President

I’d like to wish members all the very best for the coming year. The Journal of Australian Ceramics’ 50th year (a semicentennial I believe!) is shaping up as an interesting one. For a ceramics magazine to have remained productive and relevant for fifty years is no small feat and a tribute to contributions by successive generations of members and subscribers.

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December 2010

by Patsy Hely, President

This is my first report as President since taking over from Julie Bartholomew. Julie has been a fantastic advocate for the Association and she, Executive Officer Vicki Grima and all of the Board have expertly steered TACA through a very successful year. Membership has grown, the Journal has even wider distribution, and a number of successful events have been held including the 340 grams members show at Gulgong and the Ilona Romule workshop in Sydney and the Photographing Ceramics workshop in Melbourne.

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August 2010

by Julie Bartholomew

The workshop given by Latvian ceramicist, Ilona Romule at the beginning of June encompassed exceptional skill and commitment to porcelain practice. Ilona had many stories to tell about her international lifestyle exploring residencies and workshop around the globe. Thanks to Maddy for organizing the workshop at Newington Armory, Sydney Olympic Park. Upcoming TACA workshops will focus on Photographing Ceramics with Caterina Pacialeo in Sydney and Christopher Sanders in Melbourne, and a Grant Application Workshop with Sam Wild from NAVA.

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June 2010

by Julie Bartholomew

TACA members’ exhibition, titled 340 grams, was a great success at Clay Energy in Gulgong during April. The breakfast opening attracted early risers and those who may have wandered from the pub after a night of festivities while catching up with old friends and colleagues. Apart from many excellent talks and demonstrations, particularly from Ken Yonetani, Louise Boscacci and Torbjørn Kvasbø, Janet’s Gulgong event was a fantastic opportunity to reconnect with ceramic practitioners and enthusiasts. Janet Mansfield always states that this is the last event but I am sure everyone hopes they will continue for many years to come.

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April 2010

by Julie Bartholomew, President

I have returned from my Asialink Residency in Taiwan ready for many exhilarating future events including TACA member’s exhibition at Clay Energy in Gulgong, 2010. The exhibition is titled 340 grams and 130 members have registered so it promises to be an extensive and exciting representation of small-scale work. Vicki and Ashley will be managing the show as well as promoting membership, subscriptions and back issues from 28 April until 2 May.


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February 2010

by Vicki Grima (Executive Officer, TACA)

The focus for Issue 49/1 is on wood-firing and lustre and, with Rowley Drysdale as guest editor, it is shaping up to be a terrific issue. Copy deadline is 8 February. _Over the last year, the average time spent by visitors to our website,, is around 4.25 minutes, with 30,475 visits (up from 24,000 visits in 2008). Unique visitors 20,258; 130 countries/ territories made up those visits – Australia, USA, UK, Canada and China were the top five (22,218 from Australia). The ACD is most popular after the home page, then JAC page, then the online shop. TACA membership numbers as at 1 December 2009 were 566 (up 118 in last 12 months): 375 with insurance, 185 without insurance and 6 life members. 67% take insurance.

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December 2009

from Barbara Campbell Allen (Acting President, TACA)

There has been significant change in the Sydney ceramic gallery scene where we have seen the closure of the Freeland Gallery and the imminent closure of the Helen Stephens Gallery. Both galleries have been active in promoting ceramic art in their own distinctive manner and have contributed greatly to ceramic art in Sydney. Luckily both directors have a passion for ceramic art that will ensure their continued activity in the ceramic world.  As an organisation we thank them and wish them well in their future endeavours. In the just published Journal of Australian Ceramics there is a focus on modes of selling with five artists discussing their own approach and experiences. The exhibiting and selling of our work is a continual challenge!

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August 2009

from Dr Julie Bartholomew, President, TACA

The Australian Ceramics Triennale 09, Facing the Future was very well attended and a great success. A stream of stimulating and informative talks, action-packed demonstrations, endless exhibition openings, long late-night pub conversations, a dazzling wind-up in the Cell Block with footage of Renegade Clay and a fantastic grand finale party at SCA.


The closing ceremony for White Heat on the Sunday delighted many visitors who were also attending the Triennale. I was particularly pleased to have been able to acknowledge the artists who exhibited in White Heat. Ten of the exhibitors contributed towards the ceremony. They carried hundreds of hand-written good-will wishes, which had been placed in Maddy Ghosh’s Buddhist monk bowls, outside to the candle-lit circle to be burnt as offerings to the future. A khom loi lantern was also lit and sent into the night sky – a wonderful sight.

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June 2009

from Dr Julie Bartholomew, President, TACA

Inspired by reports from the 23rd NCECA 2009 in Phoenix, Vicki and I submitted a proposal for NCECA 2010 in Philadelphia. We are interested in giving two lectures under the umbrella of Australian Ceramics – Fearlessly Inside Out. Vicki proposed to look broadly at how Australian ceramicists look outwards, to Asia and beyond, with a strong sense of identity and confidence. I am interested in Australian-based risk takers who confront local and global issues of concern whilst maintaining a strong connection with clay, its history and powerful materiality.

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April 2009

from Dr Julie Bartholomew, President, TACA

We are already witnessing a number of exceptional exhibitions during the lead-up to the Australian Ceramics Triennale 09, Facing the Future, 16 – 21 July. The Wollongong City Gallery staged influences & dialogue in December, an exhibition honouring the life and influential career of Alan Peascod. Pippin Drysdale’s serene and technically exquisite exhibition titled Tanami Mapping at the Michael Reid Gallery continues until 4 April.These exhibitions are a sign of events to come as we anticipate more than 35 ceramics-based shows during the Australian Ceramics Triennale (ACT) 09. Already 22 exhibitions have been listed in the exhibition section of the ACT website:

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February 2009

From Dr Julie Bartholomew, President, TACA

Plans are underway for the July 2009 edition of The Journal of Australian Ceramics. Issue 48/2 will focus exclusively on the Australian Ceramics Triennale, to be held in Sydney from 16 to 20 July. The July issue will increase in size and include interviews with keynote speakers, a four-day conference program, workshop information and an exhibitions guide.


Twenty five artists have been chosen for White Heat, TACA’s Biennial Exhibition 2009 at Manly Art Gallery and Museum. Selected artists are a mix of established and emerging ceramics practitioners and will work to a brief that focuses on social, political and cultural concerns with an emphasis on sculpture, installation or non-functional vessel forms. White Heat opens before the Australian Ceramics Triennale on Friday, 12 June and will be a significant event in conjunction with the Australian Ceramics Triennale during July.


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