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Vivienne Litson

Ceramic Artist

Vivienne Litson

Exhibiting in Blackwood River Arts Trail At:

The Studio Shed

Big Title

B. 1946

I Grew up in many locations as the family followed my father's work for the Commonwealth Government of Australia, spending some years on our grandparent's farm where I learned to observe and recognize the interactions that occurred in the environment where I lived.

I met my first best friend at school in Onslow in 1952. We shared that interaction with environment after school, wandering through sandhills, looking for flowers, observing vegetation then down to the beach to play in the sand, observe the fish. Then on into my childhood life, the surrounding nature was always important, wherever we lived; climbing trees, building cubbies, identifying bushes, trees, creatures of all kinds, including snakes and brumbies as well as swimming in the river and ocean and of course, playing with mud, looking at pottery, making the connection.

I attended seven schools in different locations and graduated from Claremont Teachers' College in the summer of 1966.

Art was always present in various forms, supporting my work.

I worked as a primary school teacher for 17 years for the Education Department until I resigned in 1987, for health and family reasons, later working part time for another 7 years.

In 1992, I re-entered the system: At the same time, surrounded by a lively and busy family, began to study part time for a BA in Visual Arts at Edith Cowan University, majoring in Ceramics with minor studies in drawing, painting, textiles & printmaking, graduating in 1999. Was awarded a Highly Commended prize for final year Ceramic Arts students by Perth Studio Potters in 1998.

Entered extra studies at Central Metropolitan TAFE to learn production pottery and expand technical skills. My sons were always an inspiration to me.

After graduating, I chose to work in Community Centres teaching after school Children's drawing and painting classes and evening Adult Ceramic classes. Then co-ordinated some school holiday art classes.

Highlights of the next few years were working for the Maylands Alma Venville Centre, Yokine Community Centre and Karrinyup Community Centres.

Exhibited sculptural and functional ceramics at Fremantle Arts Centre, at Perth Studio Potters and entered for Wanneroo and Joondalup City Art Shows as well as at Houghton's Winery.

In 2003, moved to Bridgetown. Exhibited work at Bridgetown Pottery Restaurant and subsequently at Myalup Vines Winery in 2014. Since that time, have worked teaching local workshops and classes for adults and children, most recently at Northcliffe Community Centre in 2019.

Among other functional work, completed a private commission for an 83 piece dinner set in 2020 and led some small classes and workshops with notable and lively adult students at the Studio Shed.

An important part of my work is to convey the process of making in the finished form.

I like to work using the potters wheel and also by handbuilding, using coil and throw techniques as well as forming within a mold and then altering the shape by developing the work freely outside and above the form. Sometimes a piece will be completely hand formed with no supports.

Having lived in areas where artesian water is an important resource, especially in drought times, some of my work pays tribute to the preciousness of water supplies held within the earth.

In the past, some of my work has explored the relationship between people, the earth, community and shelter, celebrating continued cultural connections to the planet in my series, “The Earthdwellers”, still to be seen at the Studio Shed.

Wheel throwing of clay and hand building techniques will be demonstrated between 10am and 11.30am and at  2.30pm  on open days.

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