Joya: AiR / Nana Sawada / Japan / Elliott Haigh / UK
“Joya: AiR for us was the beginning of a collaborative process after both graduating from Central St Martins UAL, last year. We approached the residency with very little forethought with the intention to let the experience of the place and people guide our approach, with only one set of ideals which was to respond in sculpture.
After arriving at Joya: AiR it became apparent that the physicality of the landscape captured our attention in the potential of the abundance of clay. We had used clay as a sculpting material before, primarily to make moulds for casting however prior to Joya: AiR we had never worked with natural clay on the spot. We therefore began a learning process of how to refine and mix the clay beneath our feet and the use of cob as a building material. This led to a range of sculptural pieces with process and the heart of the work, through experiments with the clay we also discovered that the making process and outcome were also beginning to emulate the landscape itself in terms of the building of layer after layer evoking the sedimentary layers visible in the landscape.
We also spent much of our time walking and hiking in the local area, especially in the winding baranco’s where we became captivated with the opportunity to find fossils and the experience of the scale of time that this generates. Over the 2 weeks we developed a small collection of fossils and rocks with which we attempted to weave in to our work to explore the notions of time and place, resulting in a pseudo scientific lab within our studio.
The residency challenged our previous perceptions of making work, which made us reconsider our approach to making art both technically and conceptually.
Nana Sawada Elliott Haigh . https://cargocollective.com/elliottnana