Francoise Joris – Artist Profile

Francoise Joris is a Belgian ceramic artist. Her work is identifiable by its ethereal, fragile appearance and suggestions of marine and plant living forms. The best introduction to her work is perhaps this video, which although in French with Dutch subtitles, demonstrates her creative process.

JW: Do you use cellulose or nylon fiber additives in your porcelain slip for strength?

FJ: Yes I use cellulose or flax fibers in my porcelain but not in all artworks.

JW: It looks like you glued balls of packing material on a balloon. What was the glue you used? Or did you use porcelain slip?

FJ: Balls are glued on a balloon with porcelain slip.

JW: How did you develop this technique? 

FJ: I wanted to get aerial artworks without the support of a shell so the only way to reach my goal was using a balloon and porcelain slip to build my artwork.

JW: How has your work evolved over time?

FJ: I had a classic history: working the clay, turning, stamping, plate work, creating molds, studying high temperature Shino enamels, working with polished and sigillated clays.

After more than 10 years of experimenting, I made very thin and translucent bowls where the thickness of the porcelain and the enamel was almost identical.

I then decided to do personal research to open porcelain to almost all possible fields, by associating it with fibers and / or cellulose.

At the beginning my pieces were white because the porcelain is sufficient on its own.

I then introduced color through Nerikomi techniques and made personal adaptations to these techniques.

My porcelain is colored in the mass, there is no transfer, nor coloring by hand.

JW: Much of your work involves Nerikromi. Where did you learn that technique?

FJ: My research on color introduced me to Nerikomi techniques.

I made many tests to finally bring my personal touch to these techniques to adapt them to my work.

JW: What are your sources of inspiration?

FJ: When a little girl I lived in Africa and my childhood was influenced by the rhythm of the seasons and the surrounding nature. I have always felt in harmony with my environment very close to land and water. So yes we can say that the land-based and aquatic nature influences my current work. Even today throughout my travels, nature continues to feed my imagination.

You may enjoy more of Francoise Joris’ work on her website.

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