There are not many galleries in Melbourne that regularly exhibit ceramic art; Skepsi and Stephen McLaughlan galleries come to mind. Pan Gallery specializes in ceramic art and is located at Northcote Pottery Supplies Pty Ltd (in Brunswick not Northcote).
“Crosshatched”, the final show at Pan Gallery, is a group exhibition featuring the work of both emerging, established and traditional ceramic artists. Two traditional Indian potters, Manohar Lal and Dharmveer made the traditional Indian mudka, water pots. The mudka provide unity to the exhibition, an objective and a base for the artists to decorate using a variety of types of glazes and other techniques. Deborah Halpern, best known in Melbourne for her statue, the “Angel” on the bank of the Yarra River, has decorated two mudkas in the exhibition. Truly Southurst, a graduate of the ceramics program at LaTrobe University’s Bendigo campus, created a whimsical mix of Indian and Western illustration and decoration on her mudka. Jill Anderson painted a political satire of Tony Abbott and Julia Gillard doing back-flips at sea. The pots in the “Crosshatched” exhibition are being sold by silent auction to raise funds to build an energy efficient kiln in Kumhaar Gram, India.
Although Pan Gallery is located in one corner of a pottery supplies shop the quality of the installation is very strong; managing to create well curated gallery display in the space. The pots are displayed on a series of plinths while a slide show of the manufacture of the mudka was projected on one wall and a large pile of undecorated mudka pots are installed in the middle.
I’ve been intending to visit Pan Gallery since it opened 3 years ago and even though it is located close to me in Brunswick I have neglected to visit it. Now it is about to close to make way for more space for workshops and classes. I have slipped up in not writing about Pan Gallery sooner. Madeline Healey in the Moreland Leader (18/4/11) wrote an excellent article about the final show: “Brunswick East Pottery auction to help Indian artists”. Craft Victoria’s blog also has a post about the final show.
Northcote Pottery Supplies Pty Ltd. has another gallery space at the front of the shop – “Small Pieces” which will remain open. “Small Pieces” stocks small ceramic works from a selection of artists.