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Tablescapes


This month, Clementina van der Walt exhibits her tableware at the UCT Irma Stern Museum in an exhibition titled: Tablescapes: ceramics, still life and the turning world.

We've previously featured Van der Walt's bespoke tableware and their function as useable art. Now visitors to the exhibition, which opened earlier this month, will be able to admire her ceramics for what they really are – tabletop masterpieces.

'I wanted to focus on the arrangement of domestic objects in a way that gives significance to and emphasis on the daily interaction of what we admire and use in order to nourish ourselves in our everyday lives (both physically and philosophically,' says Van der Walt. 'The intention is to present an intimate world where time is suspended in the form of shapes, colours and textures, reclaiming the space of the personal in this mad external world we live in.'

Ceramics on display are mainly utilitarian – plates, bowlscups and vases – but not necessarily sets. The tableware is presented on various tables on loan from Design Afrika, Ebony and Lutge Gallery in several rooms of the gallery at the Irma Stern Museum. The domestic nature of the architecture of the museum – the former home of the museum's namesake – enhances the theme of the exhibition.

Table figurines and found objects, such as rocks and animal skulls, have also been included to complement each of the tablescapes. 'Themed groups of objects which tell a story will be displayed on a particular table chosen for an aesthetic that relates to the group of ceramics,' says Van der Walt.

One of the highlights of the exhibition is a display of plates depicting still life images inspired by the paintings of Irma Stern.

In addition to the tablescapes setup throughout the museum, there are several wall panels which continue the still life theme in a two-dimensional format.

The exhibition runs until 19 January, 2013, at the UCT Irma Stern Museum, Cecil Road, Rosebank, Cape Town. For more information visit irmastern.co.za.