Janet Fieldhouse

Janet Fieldhouse – 'Never The Same', 2021


Never The Same is an abstraction of the carrying vessels – baskets and drinking vessels - of the Torres Straits. The artist expresses exploring making multiples of the same cylindrical form, which also referenced armbands, as a base to create distinct objects different from how they first appeared. Folding in the top of one of the pieces resembled a basket, and adding the woven elements further highlights the materiality of woven basketry. The blue skirt references the ripple of water, and the stands resemble star fish further connecting these works to the landscape of the Torres Straits.

Born in Cairns, Queensland, Janet Fieldhouse’s ceramic hand-built forms acknowledge the Torres Strait traditions of navigation, living off the sea and the land, and women’s traditional practices such as weaving body adornments for ceremony and scarification.

“My work is an expression of my Torres Strait Islander heritage: the material culture, rituals of social and religious life, and artefacts which are created to fulfil the functional and spiritual needs of the peoples of the Torres Strait.”

Janet Fieldhouse has received acclaim and recognition for the following accolades: Inaugural Indigenous Ceramic Art Award from Shepparton Art Museum in 2007 and 2012, Australia Council residency at the Kluge-Ruhe Aboriginal Art Collection of the University of Virginia, USA, 2017 and the Premier’s Prize for Excellence at the Cairns Indigenous Art Fair, 2019. Fieldhouse’s recent exhibitions include Faceless at Cairns Art Gallery (2022), The National: New Australian Art, Museum of Contemporary Art, Sydney (2019), The 9th Asia Pacific Triennial of Contemporary Art, Queensland Art Gallery, Brisbane (2018-19) and Tarnanthi: Festival of Contemporary Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Art, Art Gallery of South Australia, Adelaide (2015).


May 6- June 24

Read about the exhibition.

Jugs is part of Melbourne Design Week 2023, an initiative of the Victorian Government in collaboration with the NGV.

Material: Buff Raku Trachyte, Japanese speckled paper raffia.

Dimensions: approx. 32 x 34 x 34 cm

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