Since launching her studio, Claudia Lis has focused on developing a quiet body of celadon wares inspired by historic examples of Oriental stoneware and porcelain. She assembles her ceramics in groups united by their related forms and subtle variations in colour, thereby creating a still-life atmosphere around her pieces.
Iron oxide in a variety of forms and particle sizes is central to her work. The soft green shades of her celadon glazes are derived from additions of finely ground iron oxide to the base glaze. The same material, in the form of rust flakes implanted into the dusty glaze layer, migrates through the molten glaze during firing, thereby creating intricate markings reminiscent of ink stains on blotting paper, scorch marks and microscopic organisms. More recent experiments have included the use of wire wool strands, bronze, silver and copper oxide powders to create variations on the theme of metal-induced staining. On some of her pieces Lis uses fine, linear incisions to achieve graphic effects, which are emphasized in their clarity by pooling of the glaze in the recesses.
Lis aims to encourage with her work a restful but inquisitive state of mind. Inspired by John Keats’ “Song of Opposites”, her aesthetic brings together opposing forces such as randomness and control, immaculate surface and blemish, subtle colours and harsh contrast. By uniting them in one piece she stresses the complementary character of these opposites and the potential for beauty and reconciliation that lies within these unresolved tensions.