Jaime Jenkins lives and creates in Tauranga, and grew up on an orchard down the road from her now-studio.Read More
Jaime hand-builds pieces that are not confined to any definitions of what clay can and should do. Teetering on the edges of functionality and fragility, her works often take on organic and intricate forms. Things that are not traditionally made with the hard and fragile material, or that create movement and sound, such as chains or bells are frequent subjects in Jaime's practice.
Jaime is also interested in pushing the structural capabilities of clay — constructing dense architectural pieces that can be used as stools, shelves and tables, or works that simply exist in isolation as large sculptures. Taking months to dry and with many succumbing in the kiln at the final stage, Jaime is still learning the extent to which she can push the material.
A main source of inspiration for Jaime is her experiences of nature and natural forms, which she translates into her stoneware. Jaime speaks of feeling 'filled up by nature' when she spends time in the landscape — out for a bush walk or diving into a water hole. The glazes and slips Jenkins uses are earthy and celestial, reflecting this deep attachment to the environment. Starry blues, forest-floor greens and deep grounding reds are some of the colours Jenkins has chosen for her latest pieces.
Jaime's first foray into ceramics was figurative (making animals and rocks), but then she turned to domestic ware — functional pieces which allowed her to develop her skills and process for making. From here, Jaime turned back to making sculptures and used these two past phases to inform her contemporary work, an example being her slab-built pillars and fragile ceramic tapestries and chains.
Jaime has an Advanced Diploma of Visual Arts in Ceramics from Toi Ohomai, Bay of Plenty. The artist has also completed internships in Aotearoa and London and recently completed a residency at Driving Creek Pottery in the Coromandel.
In early 2020 Jenkins exhibited Break a Fig as part of the ‘Fired Up: Festival of Ceramics’ with us at Jhana Millers Gallery. Other recent exhibitions of Jenkins’ work were at the Dowse Art Museum, Wellington (Dirty Ceramics, 2020), SPA_CE Gallery, Napier (on the verge of blue, 2019), Michael Lett and Ivan Anthony, Auckland (Gestamtkünstwerk, 2019), and Jhana Millers Gallery (Salt Pillars, 2019 and Summer Selection, 2020).
Text courtesy Jhana Millers.