I have been a practicing professional ceramic artist and teacher since the mid 90’s in South Africa and have very recently arrived to live in Toronto.
In my work I have attempted to integrate symbolic, visual, tactile and spiritual values- blending form, function and meaning. My work resonates with light, sound, pattern and texture.
My work includes one-off pieces that are created by coiling and hand-building as well as specialized ranges of thrown work: and the surface of the vessels are then carved, sculpted or engraved with intricate patterns and symbols that combine the geometric and organic.
I have also made ranges of porcelain lighting created by piercing, slip-trailing and resisting intricate patterns through which the light resonates.
There are many diversities and extremes that I try and hold and balance within my life and work- the white porcelain and black basalt clay; the closed, lidded and the open form; the tiny and the large. Within them all, they hold the silence and meditation of the making, the time, the process and the attention to detail.
I make vessels because containers are about potential. My focus is on the space-in- between; defined spaces of emptiness making room for something to be held.
I have recently moved from South Africa to Canada and have been a practicing ceramic artist and teacher for over 20 years. Below is a short resume of my life and work.
Graduated in 1989 with a BA Fine Arts in Photography from the University of the Witwatersrand, Johannesburg, South Africa
Studied Ceramics at the Kim Sacks School of Ceramics and started
making ceramics full time creating one-off coiled and hand-built pieces (1991 – 1995)
Set up my own teaching studio and continued to make ceramics (1995-
Taught drawing and printmaking at the National School of the Arts, Grade 10-12 (1996)
Taught photography and drawing at Visual Arts and Crafts Academy
(VACA), a Non Government Organisation focused on arts education and training (1996)
Vice-Principal of VACA (1997 – 1999)
Director of VACA (2002 – 2006)
Formed Ceramic Business with ceramist Anthony Shapiro designing and manufacturing specialised home ware ranges for local and international stores, the business became known as Loren & Ant Ceramic Designs (2002-2005)
Set up on my own as Loren Kaplan Ceramic Art and Design focusing on growing my teaching studio and my ceramics: commissioned based work, one-off coiled pieces, specialised ranges, porcelain and stoneware lights highly patterned with slip-trail and drilled piercings, collaborative work and organic firings (2005-
My teaching focused on all forms of handwork including pinching, coiling, sculptural work, slab work, the relationship of form, function and design, a diverse range of techniques of surface detail and decoration for all levels of experience.
I was a Co Trainer, Facilitator and mentor for Create Africa Trading on behalf of the South African Department of Arts and Culture on Product Development, Design and Marketing Courses for artists and crafters.
Exhibitions and Awards
1987 Martiensen Exhibition Annual student competition at the Gertrude Posel Gallery-Johannesburg
1988 Martiensen Exhibition-highly commended for photographic work
1991 Group exhibition of South African Fine Art photographers at the National Gallery of Namibia
1992 Group exhibition of Ceramics at the Kim Sacks Gallery-Johannesburg
1993 “Black and White in Craft”- Group exhibition at the Kim Sacks Gallery
National Ceramic Biennale- won the First National Bank Award, 2nd prize in the Vessel Category
1995 Africus Biennale- Group exhibition of South African Ceramics entitled ‘Africa Earthed’ at Museum Africa- Johannsburg
1998 Vita Craft Award at the African Window- Johanneburg
1998 National Ceramics Biennale- Sandton Civic Gallery-Johannesburg 1998 Vita Craft Award at the Castle-Cape Town
1998 Participant of the South African exhibit at the World Trade Fair in London
1998 Beyond the Pale- Designer-maker exhibition-Johannesburg
1999 Beyond the Pale
2000 “Black and White in Craft”- Group exhibition at the Kim Sacks gallery
2005 Gallerie Galapagos- Group Exhibition-Johannesburg
2006 Design Indaba- Cape Town Convention Centre
2006 Rooms on View-South Africa House-Sandton Convention Centre- Johannesburg
2007 Design Indaba-Cape Town Convention Centre
2007 SHIFT-Joint Exhibition with Yda Walt-Amoeba Gallery-Johannesburg
2008 Design Indaba-Cape Town Convention Centre
2008 National Corobrik Ceramics Exhibition-University of Johannesburg Art Gallery
2008 Making Space: Solo Exhibition at Alliance Francaise- Johannesburg
2008 Oppitafel VIII An Exhibition of Ceramic Art and Lighting at Artspace- Johannesburg
2008 Soccerex Department of Arts and Culture Sandton Convention Centre- Johannesburg
2009 Design Indaba-Cape Town Convention Centre
2009 Oppitafel Babettes Feast at Artspace Gallery-Johannesburg
2010 Translations: Art into Jewellery- Standard Bank Gallery-Johannesburg
2010 Group Show, Ceramic Artists OBJEKT-Parktown-Johannesburg
2011 Southern Guild Design Exhibition-Edward Read Gallery-Johannesburg
2011 Group Ceramic Exhibition-Art in the Forest Gallery-Cape Town
2012 RESONATE- Solo Exhibition of Ceramic Bells-Mot Mot-Johannesburg
2014 Toronto Outdoor Art Show-Honorary Mention-Best of Ceramics
Constitutional Court of South Africa Art Collection: Bells of Forgiveness- A set of 6 Basalt Bells hanging off a mild steel structure