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Creating mindfulness through art: A chat with ceramicist, Abbey Jamieson

Art has a way of making you feel something. A connection or story, brought to life through the artist. Ceramic artist Abbey Jamieson is no exception, making unique, beautiful ceramic pieces with an aim to create more mindfulness through her craft.

We sat down to hear about Abbey’s emerging career  a talented maker who’s sure to leave her mark on the art world.

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Abbey Jamieson ceramicist portrait
Ceramicist Abbey Jamieson | Photo credit: Lean Timms
Ceramics by Abbey Jamieson

Based in Canberra, Abbey Jamieson is a young ceramic artist whose creations are more than just art.

“I grew up here in Canberra and live with my partner Dan and our many plant children! I’ve always been creative and when I was 12, did a school holiday program at Canberra Potters. My parents were really supportive and I continued for the next 5 years.

“My original plan was to be a fashion designer, so I enrolled in textiles at the ANU School of Art & Design. In my second year I did an elective in ceramics.

“I spent so much time in the ceramics workshop that I decided to change this to be my major. Clay just make sense to me,” smiles Abbey.

Smoking ceramics by Abbey Jamieson
Image by Adam McGrath
Ceramic artist Abbey Jamieson
Abbey Jamieson at work | Photo credit Lean Timms

At first glance Abbey’s ceramic pieces look beautiful and delicate, however they have a much deeper meaning than that.

“My work is very much centred around ideas of comfort and connection,” explains Abbey.

“During my final year of my Undergraduate degree I was struggling with my mental health and I wasn’t the only one. In order to comfort my friends I would make them tea. This process became as much about comforting my friends as it was to comfort myself.

“As I started making cups, the tea continued. My Comfort Cup series evolved from these experiences. I designed the rounded bases of the cups to fit into the curve of the hand and paired them with either worry stones or heat packs.

I wanted to create cups that would help people feel like they weren’t alone.

“My cups all require a little more attention than the standard cup as they don’t have flat bases. This encourages people to be mindful in the way they are handled and placed onto their respective bases.

“Mindfulness encourages engagement with the activity at hand. A quiet moment for yourself amongst the hustle and bustle of life.

Ceramics by Abbey Jamieson

“I find tea to be a really powerful medium for contemplation. When I sit with a cup of tea and stop focusing on my ever growing to do list, I allow myself time to reflect and listen to what I need. When I have tea with others, it often serves as a pathway to connection and vulnerability.

I purposefully leave my finger marks in my work to allow an opportunity for connection between the user and myself. 

Ceramics by Abbey Jamieson
Image by Lean Timms

In a world dominated by cheap and cheerful pieces and ‘fast art’, Abbey hopes her pieces will allow others to seek out hand-built, timeless creations.

“It was during 2015 when I was on exchange to Alberta College of Art and Design in Canada where I realised, albeit delayed, that hand-built ceramics could be functional rather than exclusively sculptural.

“When I’m in my creative process, coming up with new ideas, it often takes me a while. I research, think, journal, scribble drawings and make, over and over before I lock onto an idea,” says Abbey.

“I aim to make work with emotional durability. My hope is that the items I make will be kept and cared for over time, rather than being discarded once something new comes along.

I’m acutely aware that once fired, clay becomes ceramic and will never break down. With this knowledge in mind, I feel it is my responsibility as a ceramic artist to make work that is intentional and made to the best of my ability.

Big thank you to Abbey for sharing her craft with us, and her open, honest responses. To discover more of Abbey’s collections and recent exhibitions, visit her website or check out her Instagram page.

Discover more artist profiles here

Selection of Ceramics by Abbey Jamieson
Ceramics by Abbey Jamieson
Ceramics by Abbey Jamieson
Gina Beschorner Style Curator

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