b.1996 Devon, England

Based in London & Devon

cjervoise@gmail.com
@cecilylj



I am a scavenger, digger and collector. An artist, environmentalist and imperfectionist. I thrive foraging in bins and bushes for the perfect piece of plastic or creamy clump of clay. My work floats in a post-capitalist framework, using a limitless supply of unwanted and unvalued mud and waste to create a tangible, tactile something, like a pot or plastic painting. Exclusively using foraged natural materials and waste, my work’s ecological outlook aims to repair our disconnection with nature. My material choices defying current conventions surrounding nature and consumerism by prioritising material cycles and stories.

Recently digging, filtering, hand building and naturally firing ceramics brings focus to a domestic, feminist space. I dig the clay in a pond where I paddled growing up. The slow, labour intensive filtering process is all-consuming yet energising, sorting muddy rocks to challenge consumerist conventions. After a laborious filtering and sculpting process, the ceramics are set on fire with organic matter such as food waste and menstrual blood, creating mystical and unpredictable patterns. It is a constant collaboration with nature, revelling in unknown variables. As well as rooted in my childhood, the clay empowers me, cathartically processing my environmental anxieties through grounding myself in a mud and pot practice. The process is the practice, manifesting in sculptures, obsessive photographic archiving, rudimental videos and compulsive rubbish and food waste stashes which saturate my cupboards ready for future work. My methods also rethink institutional barriers by contextualising craft within fine art, through research on Aristotle’s material hierarchy and feminist vessels.

I revel in my process which slows me down to clay time, unable rush the drying drip of clay. The process energises and grounds me. It allows me space to revel in my amateur craftspersonship and my unfinished, untidy, in motion, and unmonumental presentation where materials come directly from my surroundings and are intuitively formed by hand. This spontaneous yet slow method makes my studio and work alive, like a garden in spring, flowing and growing in cycles of chrysalis and development. The mud has become a part of me, an extension of an anti-capitalist attitude which shapes my decisions in life and work. And once the foraged mud has turned to pots, my favourite phenomenon occurs; as the pots themselves prompt foraging for flowers to fill them, further reconnecting the owner to nature.