JOEL TONKS: Forged by fire, shaped by time
September 14, 2020 – October 11, 2020
‘Forged by fire, shaped by time’ is the result of recent hiking expeditions by Orange-based multidisciplinary artist Joel Tonks to document the biological and geological taxonomy of the Central West region.
The defining feature is an 11-13 million year old volcanic flow of basalt, rhyolite, and other igneous rock emanating from Mount Canobolas (Gaahnabulla) flowing to Mount Panorama (Wahluu) and beyond. This lava flow is responsible for creating the regions distinctive quartz veins which hold rich gold seams, as well as the nutrient rich soils, rivers, and high-altitude peaks which sustains many forms of endemic life.
Gathering reference images, and texture imprints from the burnt landscape, these were used to make moulds for slip-cast earthenware vessels and served as inspiration for a series of ‘raku’ experiments, fired in a homemade kiln. The resulting artworks are representations of an environment frequently reshaped by fire, and the diverse life which emerges from it.
A BRAG Foyer Exhibition
Image: JOEL TONKS, ‘Lichen’ 2018, naked raku. Image courtesy of the artist.