ART SPOTLIGHT ON GABRIELLE BURKE OF G CERAMIC & CO.
The trifecta of form & function, design & aesthetics and human interaction creates a beautiful- yet often unknowing - relationship that each of us engage in every day. The objects that appeal to us and are invited to serve their purpose in our homes become the pillars of our daily experiences; the furnishings, art, and accessories we choose shape not only the visual elements of everyday life, but the functional way we live as well.
It is this relationship that inspired ceramicist and Emily Carr graduate, Gabrielle Burke, to pursue her passion and create G Ceramic & Co. , a collection of artisan tableware and accessories handmade in the heart of Vancouver. “I love that people have an intimate relationship with the objects. They pick them up and fondle them. They allow that mug to touch their lips as they sip on their morning coffee//tea everyday. The objects are thoughtful, they have meaning.”
Burke has been invited to participate in this year’s ADDRESS, an annual, curated platform to showcase art and design from over 30 of the Pacific Northwest’s most elite designer/makers hosted by Kate Duncan; the four day limited engagement is taking place from Thursday, May 25th through Sunday, May 28. Tickets can be purchased online HERE.
Gabrielle is also welcoming Vancouver’s creative community and public to the G Ceramic & Co. Open House and Studio Launch Thursday May 18 from 7-10pm at her new digs in The Beaumont Studios at 316 & 326 West 5th Ave.
Tell us a little about yourself.
I'm a hopeless romantic. I love the idea of designing our lives. Exploring howwe curate a life of beautiful people, things and experiences that create our perception of the world around us.
How did you get started in your craft and what led you to where you are now? I had drawn and painted for years but always felt something was missing. I never felt fully satisfied. I was also wanting to go to Art School- so I thought I'd take a ceramics class to flesh or my portfolio. I was the worst in my class. Everything I made blew up, cracked or simply didn't work. I ended up taking the course again the next term as I needed another elective, and one day I sat down at the wheel and everything clicked. I learned how to touch and understand in a different way. I've never questioned it since.
Some people collect old cameras & typewriters. Do you collect anything?
I collect mugs. I rarely drink out of one of my own mugs. I feel like using a handmade item is almost like having a conversation with the person who made it. Who wants to talk to yourself all the time? I love supporting other artists (I was a board member of the BC Potter's Guild for 5 years.) The sad thing is I keep breaking them (handwash and dry only!) which is bittersweet as I then get to buy new ones!
Artistically, what is your favourite part of the city?
All of it. I notice the little things. The old bricks coming through the pavement on Victoria Drive and Powell St. The texture of the shingles on old kitsilano houses. The intricate designs on the bay Center and the Fairmont. I want to do a line of cast work that uses textures from different neighbourhoods- if there are some really amazing ones anywhere in the city I'd love to know!