In the interests of showing what is happening right now, such as participation in off-shore exhibitions and competitions, or what has recently been purchased by public galleries or major collections and following hot on the heels of Cheryl Lucas’s work recently purchased by Christchurch Art Gallery, we congratulate Chuck Joseph who has had work accepted by what is these days one of Europe’s most important competitions for ceramics – The Sparkasse Talent Award.
Held in the KERAMIKMUSEUM WESTERWALD in Hohr Grenzhausen – a historic salt-glaze centre, the competition centres upon a different subject each time. This time it was on THE FIGURE – SCULPTURE IN CERAMICS.
There were 388 entries from 45 countries and the finalists were reduced to 112 artists from 34 countries with 151 works/objects. In true European fashion there was a jury of five – three from Germany, one Briton and one from the USA. They are choosing the awards as I write and all will be announced at the opening on September 20th. So…Good Luck Chuck! It seems fitting that Von Tempsky is returned to Germany.
TOY SOLDIERS Von Tempsky and the Hau Hau by CHUCK JOSEPH
Here I depict a set of six soldiers from New Zealand history as a traditional set of Victorian toys with some foliage and a camp fire. The two Rangers and Von Tempsky, their mercenary leader, are shown as a Magpie, a Rook and a Myna bird, all introduced birds. Their adversaries are the Hau Hau. These Maori guerrilla fighters were fighting to regain their land and are shown as a Tui, a Huia and a Kokako, all indigenous birds.
Although toy soldiers are things of childhood, they have always represented to me society’s acceptance of something that should be questioned or at least understood because lessons of history are so soon lost.
Von Tempsky, the artistic mercenary, died at the hands of the Hau Hau and the Hau Hau’s cause was soon lost.
My figures are ghostly faded figures, souvenirs of a battle not forgotten.