postpass Jia Jia Chen and Claire Lehmann, ‘But First We Eat’ | Schoolhouse Studios

Jia Jia Chen and Claire Lehmann, ‘But First We Eat’

Schoolhouse Studio’s presents:

‘But First We Eat’ by Jia Jia Chen and Claire Lehmann

Thursday 14th March – Thursday 4th April 2019

Open Wednesday – Saturday 11am – 3pm.

Closing Event: Thursday 4th April 6 – 8pm

How can design shape the future?
In this age of digital hyper-connectivity and increasing social isolation instead of looking toward future design and technology, our focus is the historic importance of feasting and communal eating for social connectivity.
Referencing the long, intimate history between ceramic design and food; staged ceremonial dinners of locally sourced produce will showcase the ancient technique of baking food encased in clay alongside the contemporary work of six local ceramic designers and one furniture maker.
Designers showcased: Jia Jia Chen,,Claire Lehmann, Claudia Lau, Alison Frith, Andrei Davidoff, Tessy King, Tobias Bolton
Ali Frith
Alison Frith is a ceramic artist living and working in Melbourne. Through a continued investigation of surface, she explores the relationship between unconventional finishes and contained forms. With a strong focus on technique, Frith employs crater glazes to counter the clean lines of her wheel thrown vessels.
Completing a Diploma of Ceramics in 2015, Frith was the recipient of the Trudie Alfred Bequest and winner of Craft Victoria’s Fresh! Sofitel Emerging Craft Practitioner’s Award. She has also been a finalist in the McClelland Gallery Mary & Lou Senini Award, the biennial North Queensland Ceramic Awards and the Victorian Craft Awards.
She currently works for Anchor Ceramics.
Jia Jia Ji Chen
Jia Jia Chen is an interdisciplinary ceramicist working across art, design and food. She has completed her Bachelor of Fine arts and Honours in Ceramics at RMIT and will be undertaking and Masters of Contemporary art at VCA in 2019. She was the recipient of the Future Leaders Award at Craft Fresh! and has since been in solo and group exhibitions.
Her recent projects include a commission for Speak Percussion; creating bespoke ceramic percussive instruments for a visual/sound theatre piece performed at Artshouse and designing the artwork and visual branding for the Supersense ‘festival of the Ecstatic’ at the Arts Centre.
Her love of food, wine and feasts have led her into the dynamic world of food; from food styling, catering and designing custom ceramic tableware for ceremonial eating. She is also currently creating a range of tableware for Daniell Brustman’s X Art of Dining at NGV.
Kate Jones
Kate Jones has completed a Diploma of Art (Ceramics) and a Bachelor of Arts (Fine Art) with honours at RMIT. She was awarded the Trudie Alfred Bequest in 2013, the Craft Victoria Fresh award in 2014 and the Victorian Craft Award for Ceramics in 2015. Exhibitions include solo shows at Stephen McLaughlan Gallery, Craft Victoria Gallery and the Sofitel Hotel, Melbourne. Kate works at School of Clay and Art (SoCA) as a teacher, researcher and studio manager. Her private studio is based at SoCA.
She is currently on the Board of Directors for the Australian Ceramic Association.
Tessy King
Tessy King is a Melbourne based artist who works predominantly with ceramics. She studied Fine Art at RMIT and graduated with First Class Honours in 2016. The vessel is the object central to her current work through which she examines the point of convergence of sculpture and domestic ware. Within her arts practice more broadly, Tessy considers how meaning is generated through the arrangement of objects and materials in larger installations and playful vignettes. Recent exhibitions include House Sculptures at Pieces of Eight gallery in 2017. ‘Sun Room’ at Craft Victoria, ‘Contempottery’ at Mailbox Art Space, ‘Feminographies’ at Seventh Gallery and‘Viewing Zone’ at C3. Tessy was a finalist in Fresh!, 2016 and The Victorian Craft Awards, 2017.
Claudia Lau
Claudia Lau graduated from a Bachelor of Design (Communication Design) at RMIT University in 2017. With an affinity for the disposable yet permanent nature of clay, a ceramics practice was developed as a more tangible platform for design. Drawn to the purity of the craft, she found an appreciation of the labour intensive process, cultivating her awareness towards the finer details and the importance of every step. She has worked as a studio assistant to ceramicist’s Leah Jackson and Wingnut & Co. Claudia has exhibited at Modern Times and is stocked at Shifting Worlds, Monk House Design and Workday Studio.
Claire Lehmann
Claire is a ceramicist with qualifications in art history, multimedia and ceramics. Originally making tableware, she is now focusing on lighting design, her work reflects an interest in shape, texture, process, weight and material tolerance. Her ceramic work bridges industrial design, fine art and craft.
In 2017 Claire was the recipient of a ceramic scholarship and residency at the European Ceramic Work Centre (EKWC) in Oisterwijk, The Netherlands. Alongside solo exhibitions, she was a finalist in Craft Victoria’s Fresh! Awards in 2016’s and the 2017 Victorian Craft Award. Recently she has been making bespoke lighting for commercial buildings.
Tobias Bolton
Tobias is a furniture designer and maker. He trained in traditional woodworking at Handsome & Co in 2015 and has a background in art theory and practice, completing Bachelor of Creative Arts at the University of Melbourne in 2007. Tobias has exhibited and has made bespoke pieces for residences and business across Australia. He will be launching a line of furniture mid-2019.
Andrei Davidoof
Andrei Davidoff is a ceramic artist and sculptor based in Melbourne, Australia. His functional ceramic pieces are predominantly wheel-thrown and are made from local clay in his home studio. Since 2012 Andrei has been working as a studio potter, creating custom designed ceramics for some of Australia’s most loved and highly regarded restaurants. He exclusively fits out Vue de Monde, Iki Jime and Estelle. Andrei completed his Masters in Fine Arts at RMIT University in 2012.
He his artistic practise has seen as artist in residence at ‘Vaucluse House’ and he’s exhibited widely in group and solo shows including Shepparton Art Museum Showcase, Stockroom in Kyneton, Craft Victoria, Bus Projects.

The dinners

Saturday 16th March – Friday 22nd March – Sunday 31st March, 7 – 11pm

For more information:



N GV.V I C.G OV. AU/ M E L B OU R N E – D E S I G N -W E E K

Schoolhouse Studios acknowledges the Traditional Owners and Custodians of the land on which Schoolhouse Studios resides, and respectfully acknowledges Elders, both past, present and future of the Wurundjeri People of the Kulin Nation. Sovereignty was never ceded.