Colin Hopkins’ hand thrown ceramic luminaires are among the finest to emerge in the current shift towards handcrafted lighting. They are also among the most beautiful with the mark of the artist evident through slight variations that make each lamp unique. Drawing on studies in Japanese ceramic techniques and specially formulated Australian clay, Hopkins has developed an ability to throw and shape exceptionally thin products. This has recently been extended to produce pendants of an unprecedented scale.
As a practising architect, Hopkins found that the dynamics of a large pendant answered his desire for an architectural form fine enough to produce a specific light, but also function as a sculptural form. High temperature firing techniques is manifest as the signature pieces of highly translucent ceramics, which are gently shaped by the ‘swaying’ resultant of such intense heat, a highly prised attribute in Japanese ceramics.
The luminaires are rigorously simple and unaffected, with textural shifts and density comprising the mainstay of decoration. Interestingly, the glazed range, while not translucent, emphasises rather than masks these slight surface variations. The forms Hopkins has developed are in keeping with his architectural leanings, being minimalistic, sculptural and concerned with the object’s role in the visual whole of an environment.
Based in Melbourne’s Abbotsford Convent, Porcelume was founded in 2012. Shortlisted in the 2013 Australian Craft Awards, Porcelume is a wholly Australian product that showcases exemplar craftsmanship. Sustainable to the core, waste and environmental impact are minimal with recycling of materials intrinsic to all steps of production.
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