Melissa Cameron is an artist and writer from Australia, currently living and working in Seattle, Washington.
Vials of enamel powder, Künstlerwerkstätten (the artists’ workshops), Erfurt, Germany, 2014
This image of artists in motion is taken from the kiln room at the Künstlerwerkstätten in Erfurt, Germany. Overseeing the action, across from the newly erected air compressor-powered and internally vacuumed spray booth, installed for safe high-pressure liquid-enamel delivery, is a dresser filled with antique powdered enamels. They are relics of not long ago, when the inhalation of heavy metals during preparation and firing of decorative wares was considered of less concern to art makers than access to an extensive color range. What to do with them now? Firing is not an option, not when the neighboring properties are homes, a kindergarten, and a full-care facility. Disposing of them professionally seems wastefully expensive for a community-supported arts space. Thus they sit, entombed (in suspended animation, perhaps?) in the dresser, thereby becoming the only permanent art installation in this art-making space.
INDEX IMAGE: Photograph by Karoi Juzu