IN THE GALLERY: Shiny Objects

Alexandra Standen

18 Jun - 13 Jul 2024

Alexandra Standen’s work celebrates the beauty of ceramics. Unlike mass-produced vessels, she elevates the imperfections of hand-made works by using quality Italian Majolica glazes and 24-karat gold.

Historically, gold and lustreware come from the decorative technique invented by Abbasid potters of the Islamic Civilisation, in modern-day Iraq, in the 9th century C.E. It was long been believed that these techniques were true alchemy, as the process involved using lead-based glazes, silver, and copper paint to achieve the lustrous, reflective, and rich golden effect without using any gold at all. The techniques were carefully guarded secrets and traveled with artists from their origins in Iraq to Egypt, then onto Syria and Persia, finally making their way to Europe, where houses were adorned in lustrous tiles, and tables were covered in reflective vessels to impress guests.

Standen imbues her extraordinary hand-built ceramic works with this historical and secretive magic, elevating and revering the history of Shiny Objects.