Born in Nagoya in 1957, renowned international ceramic artist Yoshimi Futamura returns to Puls for the third time in the last decade. Except for periods as an artist in residence in her native Japan and in China, she has lived and worked in her studio in Paris since 1986. These rugged stoneware works have an aura of forms that might be found in nature. It is work that both challenges and affirms the very meaning of the term Japanese ceramics. Futamura emphasizes natural kiln effects as a fundamental element in her art. She says of her ceramic sculptures, "I seek to express movement, to express the power that lies within clay." The material itself emphasizes living nature, cracked almost lava-like structures, breathing clay that seems almost alive. Surfaces inlaid with banded granules of pre-fired crushed white porcelain seem reminiscent of some wild snowy landscape. Pieces often have a charred appearance, not unlike burnt firewood. She has captured and frozen a moment in time in every piece. Indeed, each one evokes in its own way the scarring yet naturally beautiful effects of the firing.
Combining strong geometric elements with recurrent patterns and architectural principles, Halima’s work utilises definite lines and dramatic angles in an attempt to manifest the universal language of number and create an unsettling sense of movement. To achieve these effects she uses heavily grogged clay that allows her to work on a large scale and utilise relatively thick surfaces to carve to the desired depth. Halima concentrates on simple forms as the basis of her work in order to maximise the impact of the complex surface patterns in combination with heavily contrasting contours.
Born in Catalonia in 1956, Claudi Casanovas initially began his artistic studies in his native Barcelona aiming at a career in theater. However, by 1978 he had been captured by the near infinite possibilities of clay. For more than three decades now, he has been doing what he loves best—creating intensely thought-provoking art. Casanovas creates sculptures—often large-scale work—from a variety of clays. His pieces are reminiscent of the earth from which they come. While not a direct evocation of the forms and textures of the geology and landforms of his native region, it is nevertheless powerful and uncompromising modern day alchemy with clay and water, fire and ice. His clay speaks from both the depths of geological time and the fleeting human time scale, exploring the power of clay to teach us what we need to know about ourselves and the rest of creation.