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Jos Devriendt
From left, Night and Day 127; 140; 130; 139; 133; 141; 105; 142; 136, 2017 
Photography by Albrecht Fuchs

The magic mushrooms of ceramic artist Jos Devriendt offer a sculptural trip
by Yoko Choy
 

Belgian ceramicist Jos Devriendt recently staged his debut New York solo exhibition at Demisch Danant gallery, a survey of his 20-something years of exploration into what he calls ‘functional sculptures’. The show took in 90 uniquely handcrafted porcelain lamps, vessels and other objects.

The most striking pieces, part of an ongoing series, Night and Day, were a collection of mushroom-shaped lamps. Their shapes, he says, are a concept that came about over time. ‘People who are interested in sculptures don’t make a point of looking at them at night, but I think it is important because you only have ten hours’ light and the rest is darkness. It’s not just about giving light, but about the idea that a sculpture can also have a life at night.’

During the day, each of the porcelain lamps is ‘lit’ by sunlight that filters through the delicate material; at night, when the electricity is switched on and the glow comes from within, the sculptures appear transformed. When the appropriate form is found, Devriendt then experiments with different colours. ‘Abstract painters use colours to give meaning to their work; I do this in a three-dimensional way,’ he says.

Slideshow

Devriendt in his Ghent studio with works in progress ahead of his most recent exhibition, in Brussels. 
Photography by Albrecht Fuchs
 

From left, Night and Day 124; 125; 143; 145; 144, 2017, all by Jos Devriendt.
Photography by Albrecht Fuchs
 

From left, Night and Day 107, 2016; Night and Day 146, 2017; Unica, 2003; Love, 1992, all by Jos Devriendt.
Photography by Albrecht Fuchs

 

Lamps in progress amid Devriendt’s sketches on his studio wall. 
Photography by Albrecht Fuchs
 

The artist’s Vertical Rainbow, 2017. New takes on the theme appear in Devriendt’s Space Horizon collection, in hues inspired by his paintings of the Ostend horizon. 
Photography by Albrecht Fuchs

 

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