Artist, Painter, Potter
Caroline Bell is an ceramic and encaustic artist based in the beautiful Whangaripo valley just out Matakana. Caroline has just recently created a fun quirky studio out of a garden shed which is surrounded by native planting and wetlands and this is now open for encaustic and ceramic workshops. Having no formal art training Caroline learnt how to throw pots, build sculptures and paint in encaustics by taking various classes and workshops in Auckland. She has since then found her own path and creates unique intuitive pieces. She exhibits in the local area at various annual fundraising art exhibitions and her ceramic work can also be seen at the Quarry Arts in Whangarei annual ceramics awards and at the Matakana Art gallery.
At first glance ceramics and encaustic painting may seem to have little in common, however in her sculptural work an encaustic hot wax finish can be applied to bisque ware instead of a glaze. Caroline works in stoneware clay and most of her vessels and sculptures are hand-built but sometimes thrown on the wheel then the shape altered. With her ceramic vessels her aim is to work quickly and spontaneously letting expression find its own path in an abstract representation of colour and shape, making each piece an original. The work progresses layer upon layer always allowing deeper areas and gestural marks to peek through. She describes how in all her work she is drawn to highly textured and organic shapes. Her sculptural work is a fun, eclectic mix of animals, plants and human figures intermingled together. With encaustic painting she describes how she enjoys the translucency of the hot wax as it plays and forms unexpected shapes. “I revel in the use of fire “ and use a torch to manipulated and fuse the layers of a painting. Following the laying down of coloured wax I then carve down into it to reveal the depth underneath”. Her philosophy to her creative process is in her own words “developed to help and awaken our senses and set us free to explore our true authentic selves, it is a journey from start to finish and has air of mystery until the creation is finished".
FIELDS OF BLUE © Caroline Bell – encaustic painting
THE DEPTH WITHIN © Caroline Bell – ceramic vessel
WHEN I HAVEN'T ANY BLUE I USE RED © Caroline Bell – encaustic painting (Picasso)
SPIRIT ANIMALS © Caroline Bell – ceramic sculpture
THE GATHERERS © Caroline Bell – ceramic vessel
Mahurangi East Tennis fundraiser - Annual Art Exhibition
Hibiscus Coast Annual Art Exhibition
MARTakana Annual Art Exhibition
Quarry Arts, Whangarei
Matakana Art Gallery