At the Royal College of Art exhibition in 2008 I spent a good 20 minutes looking
at this collection by the Danish Ceramisist Kristine Tillge Lund,
and have excelled at narrowly missing opportunities to look at
further works ever since… seems like she’s working in Denmark a
lot at the moment, but keep your eyes peeled…. The combination of
design and craftmanship used to address each concept was just
brilliant. I really felt that I was looking at work made by an
artist with an integral understanding of her material and it’s
influence on her subject.
Lust by kristen tillge Lund , 2008 ceramic and wood
The image of this artwork first caught my eye in as a printed image in publicity for the the summer show at the RCA in 2008, and i went to the show with the express intention of seeing it for myself.
The bold primary colours and somewhat familiar form are reminiscent of a toy of bygone years- i can clearly remember playing with something similar as a child, yet as a mother myself now, i can say that this sort of plaything is no longer the norm, so already i am drawn to it on a wave of nostalgia and feel assured that i recognise it already. But the name. The title of the price jars me over and over into questioning what i am looking at.
Lust is a wholly adult emotion. Sexual by nature, this sits very uncomfortably with the childish ideas of toys.
So the toy takes on a more adult theme, suddenly the forms become phallic. I find myself trying to imagine them as the tools i saw in school which were used to demonstrate how to put on a condom, but this is ultimately futile- they are toys, dildos possibly. Yet there are always the colours. The primary colours we see most commonly on toys bring me back sharply to childhood, and the exceptional finish which is flawless, high gloss, again referring to moulded plastic, a safety feature.
Again, i am swung back to uncertainty, as i have been told that the material is ceramic, a fragile, inflexible material. A material which is extremely sharp if broken, this material is unfit for toys for young children, and also unfit for sexual toys without risk. This only adds further conflict in how i can view this work. The material rules out a child,s toy, the title and form suggests sex, the material now suggests risk. The variety of sizes, and the rings on the sticks suggest multiple parties, a variety of accessories….
And once again i am drawn back to the basic colours and familiar form of a toy…. All this has been suggested to me through ceramics, wood and the title. That the finish is so flawless completes the deal, detracts nothing from the exploration of the object.
In her work, kristen tillge lund has for me encapsulated a moment of balance, of friction, of beauty, of arousal, in a sublime physical manifestation of a vast depth of intent.