French artist, Marie Liebhardt, uses textures to tell a story through her ceramic collection titled, “Flaws.” Like sidewalks, walls, furniture, and building facades, the pieces in this collection are not perfect. Time deteriorates them, brings out flaws in the materials, common textures on an uncommon surface. It is this use of texture that makes me love this body of work, and show a deeper appreciating for those everyday structures and objects that are often overlooked.
This project is broken up into two parts, the first highlights vases made purely of porcelain. Thin layers of porcelain are poured into paster molds. As the material dries, pieces of the pour stick to the mold. When the vase is removed, irregular patterns emerge from the porcelain that was left behind in the mold. No two vases are alike and resemble the aging wallpaper you might find in an old, forgotten home.
The second part of this collection highlights porcelain and metal. Instead of the porcelain being the main subject, the metal takes center stage. Framed by a uniform colored porcelain vase, the copper and brass accents are aged, leaving them unique from each other. As the metal continues to oxidize, the appearance of it changes, making these vases a living work of art.
This collection is extraordinary, as it accomplishes the task many artists set out to complete. To make the audience take a moment to ponder its meaning, and learn from what they uncover. “Flaws” invites us to appreciate how the world, and more specifically the things we have built in it, will change over time. And shows us the beauty that can be found within those changes. I know that the next time I go for a walk in my neighborhood, stepping over crumbling bits of sidewalk and passing by rusting street lights, I’ll think about this collection.