During her Craft Contemporary Residency, Claire Ellis will share the entire process of making a ceramic and recycled plastic side table. To make the legs she will transform plastic waste collected from the beaches closest to her home in Melbourne and will make the tabletop from wheel-thrown stoneware clay. The residency will provide an opportunity to introduce furniture making into her practice and explore the possibilities of scaling up.

Claire Ellis is a Canadian-born ceramic artist based in Melbourne. She predominantly makes wheel-thrown, handbuilt and slip-cast functional and sculptural ceramics. Trained as chef, Claire was drawn to ceramics to balance the intensity of her work and completed a selection of ceramic courses. While working as a chef at the award-winning Attica restaurant in Melbourne, she began making tableware for the tasting menu as part of the creative development team, and during the 2020 COVID-19 lock-down, Claire established Attica Studio Ceramics within the restaurant. In 2021 she founded Claire Ellis Ceramics.

Claire's chef experience significantly influences her work with a focus on raw materials and experimentation. Her current research focuses on incorporating transformed waste materials into her work, including glass, recycled plastic and organic materials. Claire’s interests include sustainability and climate justice, and she has written an article for the Journal of Australian Ceramics on plastic waste as a local material in her ceramics practice.

Claire Ellis, Repot (detail) 2021. Photography: Kevin Li
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Craft Contemporary

A festival exploring how craft is evolving in the 21st century
1 - 31 October