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Byron Shire
June 16, 2024

Ceramics celebrate dragons

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Alstonville ceramicist Ruth Park’s delicate jars, pots and bowls have a reptilian feel with some dragon elements. Photo Jeff Dawson


Luis Feliu

Connections between Mt Warning’s caldera rim and dragons are highlighted in a new ceramics exhibition now on show at Tweed River Art Gallery.

The Dragon’s Back exhibition features works by Northern Rivers ceramicists Sue Fraser (Alstonville), Louise Fulton (Alstonville) and Ruth Park (Wollongbar), who have been influenced by the cultures of Asia and the Middle-East.

The exhibition, according to a gallery spokesperson, celebrates the Year of the Dragon by bringing to life connections between dragons and Mount Warning’s caldera rim. ‘Wollumbin’, ‘The Cloud Catcher’, with its surrounding caldera and spiky ridgeline, has an uncanny connection to the dragon in Chinese mythology.

‘Asian dragons are associated with all manifestations of water such as cloud, rain, mist, rivers, tides, tsunamis and waterspouts.

‘Sue Fraser’s tribute horses fly among clouds of misty glaze; Louise Fulton’s wall sculptures and cauldrons display dragon characteristics such as fangs, claws, scales, clouds and water; while Ruth Park’s delicate bowls have deep pools of jade-green glaze forming a classic ‘reptile scale’ effect in the base and her blossom jars and pots have applied dragon elements as handles, knobs and spouts.’

On Sunday 1 April, from 11am till 3pm in the gallery foyer, Sue Fraser and Louise Fulton will demonstrate clay modelling, embossing and image-transfer techniques as seen in their exhibition pieces. Entry is free.

During the upcoming school holidays, on Sunday 15 April, Ruth Park will conduct two workshops on clay techniques for the younger set. From 10am till noon, for children aged 6–13 years, Sue will show participants how to make a simple dragon and from 1pm till 4pm, she will show how to make a complex dragon for teens 14 years plus.

The gallery, at 2 Mistral Road, Murwillumbah, is open Wednesday–Sunday 10am–5pm. During the holidays it is closed on Good Friday 6 April, but open Easter Saturday and Sunday. For info call 02 6670 2790.





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