Mairi Ward

“The creative process is a joyous part of my life,” Mairi tells us from her secret garden studio in downtown Launceston. “If my work can bring a bit of happiness to someone, then that means everything to me.” She is also thrilled to be on show with other Handmark artists in the Celebrating Ceramics exhibition. “I think it is going to be stunning seeing a group of Tasmanian ceramicists display together, all with our own unique voices.”

While Mairi has some larger pieces in the exhibition, most are small and accessible. Single flower vases, cups, and little bowls in vitrified matt porcelain. All are new works, are hand painted in Mairi’s trademark patterns. These ones dotted with delicate markings, in summer shades of blue, pink and green. The simple shapes allowing the “form and patterns to sing.”

Mairi first exhibited with Handmark in 2009. And while painting is her first love, ceramics, which she views as a 3-D canvas, are often exhibited alongside. This time it’s the paintings – two larger pieces and three smaller ones with vibrantly coloured patterns inspired by beach holidays – that take the back seat. “I really like the relationship of ceramics and paintings together. Both are mark-making and slightly different voices of my practice but seeing them together helps to understand my art more.”