Lena Peters: Goddesses
A collection of large-scale, boldly decorated ceramic vessels that embody mythic creatures and powerful goddesses.
David Gill Gallery
9th – 30th June, 2021
“Clay is the perfect material to explore mythology, folklore and storytelling,” reflects Lena Peters, a ceramicist whose work is based on narrative. Her latest collection of five vessels, created during lockdown, and recently launched on-line through David Gill Gallery, explores the Divine Feminine and female deities. Unsurprisingly, it is called ‘Goddesses’. Born in Ireland, Peters was brought up in Sheffield and graduated from Central Saint Martins College of Art and Design in 2017. This is her second solo show with David Gill Gallery, following on from ‘Saints and Spirits’ in 2018.
“These large body-shaped vases have heads that are lids,” she explains, “and they draw on the traditions of various mythological systems … they are my ideas of devotional vessels.” These powerful forms with their strong facial features and eyes that hold your gaze certainly command respect, even worship. They seem both supremely grounded and lofty. Functional, yet sensual, some of the vessels have sharp beak-like noses, while others sport pert, pointy breasts that are unashamedly bared. All of them wear simple gold earrings and each has a different hair style: one with a braided crown woven into her locks, another with slick lacquered kiss curls. Animal attributes sit easily with the human form – cloven hoofs and cow legs, even feathery wings.
Straight on, you are face-to-face with a powerful presence. As the vase rotates you might see a crouching form, the arms and legs tucked up. From behind the back of the head, the form appears to have a set of broad shoulders, giving a sense of physical power. Each vase is distinct, but very clearly linked to the other.
TDE TV recently visited the ceramic artist in her studio in Wood Green, in London, just before her exhibition. In their film, Peters talks about the evolution of her work and specifically about her modern interpretation of the goddess myth.
Lena Peters: Goddesses at David Gill Gallery.