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Ceramics Monthly Article

From the November 2020 issue
In my mind, I’ve been turning over and over Claire Curneen’s series of sculptures based on the story of Daphne from Greek mythology. These flower- and branch-bedecked figures reprise the story of an attempted rape: Daphne, a dryad, attracted the erotic attention of Apollo, who attempted to rape her. At the moment Apollo seizes her, Daphne’s father transforms her into a laurel tree. What I keep thinking about is the contrast, the dichotomy between the factual rigidity of Curneen’s porcelain and its contradictory visual softness and ductility. The way she makes this stiff material seem to soften and flow evokes the transformation from something mineral to something half human/half botanical.