Victor Greenaway's current work centres on the production of fine vessels, many of them spiral in form, and made either of porcelain from Limoges in France with egg-shell white, yellow or celadon glazes, or the ancient Etruscan process of making polished and black-fired 'bucchero' wares from a special fine volcanic clay.
He is currently fascinated with exploiting the possibilities of the form: to make a pure form and then alter it through the movement of the wheel and the use of a hand, finger or tool like a brush-stroke. 'You can get an amazing dynamic, to create a whole new image; I couldn't do it if it wasn't revolving on the wheel.' He loses a lot: it is like a quick sketch in charcoal on paper (using a soft wooden ball tool). For making the lips, he uses the tool - just the end of the stroke. 'The magic starts after the first hour; after the first 20 pieces - they are like sketches.'
This selected group of vessels, demonstrating most of the issues Greenaway is addressing, was donated to the Museum by the artist to celebrate his Australia Council Fellowship 2001-2002. In 2001 he proposes to continue with this work, making more large pieces, and some small sculptural forms. He will explore the possibilities of slip casting - maybe some combination of two materials; the terracotta and porcelain will both cast well. Maybe he will also go back to Italy, and also the Netherlands.
Victor Greenaway (b. 1947) has been a studio potter for 30 years, having trained first at RMIT in Melbourne in the late 1960s, and then with Ian Sprague at Mungeribar Pottery. He is represented in all major Australian collections, has received many awards including a Churchill Fellowship in 1974, numerous Australia Council Traineeship Grants to train others, an International Specialised Skills Fellowship in 1999 to assist in setting up an international school of ceramics in Umbria, Italy, and an Australia Council Fellowship 2001-2002. He set up the Broomhill Pottery at Upper Beaconsfield in 1974, ran the Meat Market ceramic workshop from 1994, and set up his current Victor Greenaway Studios at Nungumer on the Gippsland Lakes area in Victoria in 1993, moving there to work fulltime in 1998.