Judit Varga

I am fascinated by the beauty in the transient nature of living things. I use the visual metaphor of hollow pods and cocoons, empty shells and dying flowers to emphasize the impermanence in life. I freeze my soft forms into fired clay, an everlasting testimony to ephemeral changes. I am captivated by the balance and harmony in mortality: how loss of strength softens the edges, fading colors enhance fine details and makes the surface almost translucent. I like the constant drama and struggle between form, surface, color, texture, and how the passing time has an effect on all of these. Nature always yearns for harmony and thrives on balance but feeds on energy which needs dissonance and conflicts.
Each piece begins as a thick, flat clay slab, which I stretch out on a concrete floor or wooden board to create sur¬face tension. Sometimes I punch holes to add texture or to make the walls of the finished piece look inviting instead of impenetrable. While the clay is still wet I add colored slips, creating a malleable body whose surface is already finished (rather than decorated later, when the clay is hardened).This approach gives me tremendous free¬dom to make my shapes. The color is cohesively bonded to the clay body from the beginning, and it behaves naturally all the way through the hand building process, as one material. The holes and other markings move and stretch as I cut, bend, twist, coil, and build the clay into my three-dimensional forms: pods, cocoons, squares or circles or knots.