Danielle Thiris

Danielle Thiris — Uncle Souvlaki, 2023


"Uncle Souvlaki" is Thiris' second study into three ancient vessels from the artist's private collection. The first study, "Souvlaki Whispers", was created for Melbourne Now X Vessel 2023 and is currently on show at NGV Ian Potter.

A Chinese Neolithic cup (c 1800 BCE), a Greek Kylix pot (c 500 BCE) and a German drinking vessel (c 1400) were studied over the course of a three year period. Thiris was able to acquire these long coveted pieces post Melbourne's final lockdown which aided tactile observation and connection. As per previous works, Thiris collaged her interpretations and responses to these antiquities together sculpturally to create a conjoined vessel.

With a reverence for history, humanity and culture, "Uncle Souvlaki" is a further celebration of the universal language of pots and the human impulse to create vessels to carry and hold, whether for utilitarian, spiritual or aesthetic purposes.

'Uncle' carries an ash glaze made from the remnants of nightly campfires, collected from a recent camping trip with Thiris' good friend Joey Chorizzo. 'Uncle" also holds a myriad of 'around the campfire' tales.

Danielle Thiris is influenced by her Cypriot and Greek Heritage her practice explores prehistoric vessels, ceremonial objects and nature (human, animal and plant). Thiris uses a South Australian terracotta clay and hand builds her pieces using a combination of traditional techniques, such as coiling, pinching and carving. Thiris exhibited as part of NGV Melbourne Design Week, 2021 & 2022. Thiris completed a Bachelor of Visual Arts at the University of South Australia and a Bachelor of Textile Design at RMIT.

Melbourne Design Fair 2023

May 19- June 21

Read more about this years MDF here.

The Melbourne Design Fair 2023 is curated by the National Gallery of Victoria and delivered in collaboration with the Melbourne Art Foundation.


Material: terracotta, terra sigillata, slips, oxides, murray river campfire ash, mid fire glaze.

Dimensions:  530 x 1100 x 325mm

Image credit: Annika Kafcaloudis 

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