Faience Scarab –
August 2013 – 135 x 48.5cms – Clay, Paint, MDF, Paper, Print –
The term faience comes from a kind of brightly-coloured glazed earthenware developed during the Renaissance. The word is derived from Faenza, a town in Italy, where factories making the tin-glazed earthenware called Majolica were prevalent.
Called the “first high-tech ceramic”, faience is a siliceous vitrified ceramic. A scarab is a kind of beetle and Egyptian scarabs bore the names of gods, often combined with short prayers or mottos, whilst the markings engraved upon the surface often took the form of lines and dots, much like our modern-day circuit boards.
This piece was made using modelling clay pressed into computer ‘Mother Boards’, when hardened the pieces, now resembling the beetle’s hard carapace, were assembled onto a square of board with a hole in the centre. The whole was painted in an almost black colour and brushed over with silver. At the back of the hole is a print of a human face which had been distorted to look less human.
This work is intended to question our fears about & interaction with technology in the 21st century and questions where the magic of our technological Gods will lead us in the future.