JOEL TONKS: Forged by fire, shaped by time

  websized20200721 160230  websizedDSC 0048


JOEL TONKS: Forged by fire, shaped by time

14 September – 11 October 2020

Forged by fire, shaped by time is the result of recent hiking expeditions by Orange-based multidisciplinary artist Joel Tonks to document the biological and geological taxonomy of the Central West region.

The defining feature is an 11-13 million year old volcanic flow of basalt, rhyolite, and other igneous rock emanating from Mount Canobolas (Gaahnabulla) flowing to Mount Panorama (Wahluu) and beyond. This lava flow is responsible for creating the regions distinctive quartz veins which hold rich gold seams, as well as the nutrient rich soils, rivers, and high-altitude peaks which sustains many forms of endemic life.

Gathering reference images, and texture imprints from the burnt landscape, these were used to make moulds for slip-cast earthenware vessels and served as inspiration for a series of ‘raku’ experiments, fired in a homemade kiln. The resulting artworks are representations of an environment frequently reshaped by fire, and the diverse life which emerges from it.

A BRAG Foyer Exhibition



Images (left to right): JOEL TONKS , Lichen 2018, naked raku; Facet Vessel 2020, naked raku; Cracticus tibicen 2020, stoneware; Banksia Vessel, obvara raku; Burnt Banksia 2020, super-black acrylic on stoneware and Untitled Vessel 2019, naked raku; dimensions variable. Image courtesy of the artist. JOEL TONKS, Lichen 2018, naked raku. Image courtesy of the artist.