25,5 x 9 x 39 cm
Erthenware ceramics, 2020
"It’s amazing to realise that banality doesn’t exist."
Naomi Gilon is an interdisciplinary artist living in Brussels, whose monstrous creations have recently caught my attention. Naomi's work merges fashion with sculpture, creating ghoulish yet seemingly practical items, toying with notions of mundane and myth.
I was instantly fascinated with these sculptures so we contacted Naomi to learn more about her work and what inspires her practice:
Hey Naomi! We love your work, what inspires your practice?
My practice is inspired by different themes from popular culture. I started my artistic reflection with the universe of tuning as well as tattooing and piercing because they underline the idea of personalisation; making an object or a body unique. Then I rediscovered the gore and horror movies that feed my imagination. On top of this I rediscovered the mythology and tales which have come to enrich the way in which I romance my works. And today, I'm inspired by the world of fashion. I interpret it from a historical point of view; by studying the connotations that objects have.
Detail of the installation "Survivors" presented during the group exhibition Imbroglio
Curated by Like A Little Disaster, 2019
You’ve been making sculptures for the past 2 years, how has this change influenced your artwork?
Before discovering ceramics, I made assemblies of objects and materials. This is a hybridisation process that is still present in my work today, it is my basic principle. Teaching myself ceramics allowed me to no longer be in a system of appropriation of forms but of unique creations. I get control over the material and process from start to finish.
The combination of fashion and ceramics is so unique, when did you start sculpting monstrous fashion items?
My question about the fashion world started a year and a half ago with the shoes from my series "Pas Courant". These monstrous ceramic shoes analyze the role of the shoe from a historical point of view. Initially it was an ornament intended to represent social status and for many years it was the symbol of suffering. Now I'm focusing on bags. Like shoes, they are symbols of the fluctuations of time; reflections of wars, crises and revolutions. It’s amazing to realise that banality doesn’t exist.
Enameled ceramics, 2019
Enameled ceramics, 2019
The monstrous elements of your work are what make them so unique, what draws you to the monster aesthetic?
Beyond my hybridisation process, it’s obvious that the monstrous has completely invaded my work. It's in the world of tuning that the image of the monster is revealed, the beast under the hood, then in science fiction, gore and horror movies of course. I was quickly fascinated by this Being who endorses all the vices of humanity.
I borrow from popular culture the figures who take on this role in order to give birth to chimerical objects - such as "Picnic with the Wolf", which questions what scares humans the most; their own nature. My image of the monster is that of the creature that sleeps in us, good and bad, with which we must try to live with rather than get rid of it.
What do you hope to communicate in your work?
Creation is a necessity for me. It allows me to put my thoughts into images. The banal everyday objects that I use in my works highlight the place we take. My work is a reminder that it’s enough to strain one's ears to hear the creatures that sleep in us and that even in the noise of today's life we’re capable of it. It’s therapy in which I shape them.
How do you see your practice evolving in the future?
I don’t try to anticipate the ideas I might have, I let events take hold of me. But what I would really like to work with is the medium of glass. To improve and enrich the quality of my work.
Picnic with the Wolf
100 x 70 x 30cm
Ceramics on quilted carpet and bouquet of flowers, 2019
Curated by Like A Little Disaster