Irene VONCK, Urubamba Enlarge 1 /1


Dublin, Ireland born 1952


  • The Netherlands from 1973

Urubamba 1999 Description: ceramic vessel
Place made: The Hague, South Holland, Netherlands
Materials & Technique: ceramics, ceramics stoneware, stoneware and water-based pigment
Primary Insc: 'Vonck '99' incised into base

Dimensions: 20.4 h x 37.0 w x 23.0 d cm
Acknowledgement: Purchased 2005
Accession No: NGA 2005.76

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Irene Vonck’s ceramics give the impression of having been formed with powerful brushstrokes, arrested for a moment but retaining the potential for further transformation. In Urubamba she limits her surface colour to a deep brown felt-like pigment, allowing its density to obscure a complex form that evades the eye’s desire for delineation and definition. For the viewer and user this powerful object’s ambiguous function, subtle convex and concave surfaces, and asymmetrical opening force the eye to reinvent its form from different viewing angles. Glancing from some angles, the work is suggestive of a clog-like form and, by implication, the imprinted memory of the movement and posture of the invisible wearer.

Text © National Gallery of Australia, Canberra