Virtual Exhibition 3

SHARDS OF A FRAGMENTED LANDSCAPE

Artist: Philippa Allen

“In my quest to investigate belonging and my part in the landscape, I have chosen to use shards of Delft pottery as a symbol to identify the presence of humans in our environment. These ceramics are one of the most common categories of artefacts found at any archeological site or back garden locally. They represent the debris of everyday human life.

I am intrigued by the way the pottery reflects foreign scenes. The patterning and illustrations are tame, controlled and refined, a contrast to the local scenes which were and still are mostly wild, raw and untouched.

The broken pieces remind us of what once was. I’m interested with the way in which they become covered by the soil and taken in by the environment, almost becoming part of it, but not quite, as they are differentiated from the soil by their material and by the patterns at odds with the natural, indigenous forms.

The shards also remind me that nature can destroy man-made objects very easily, putting the lives of humans into perspective. The idea that the earth belongs to man is quickly refuted by the realisation that in fact man belongs to the earth.”