the early years
Johanna Schweizer’s ceramic art does not belong to the functional school. However, her boxes, vases and beakers have recognisable similarities with the pot form and although they also give the impression of being functional, her objects actually tend more towards ceramic sculpture, an area in which she is certainly interested. Schweizer has an intuitive working method paired with technical flexibility. Her objects, constructed by hand from slabs or kneaded lumps of rough chamotte, are often large, sometimes double-walled and made up of several individual elements. Schweizer’s background as a printmaker and illustrator is evident in her surface treatments. Linear motifs in pigment or porcelain strips often have a narrative quality and sometimes a characteristic roguishness. Her work is founded on personal views of tradition, aesthetics and the fabrication of ceramics heightened by an instinctive affinity with clay. This and her sources of inspiration in the formal language and decorative traditions of ancient and non-Western cultures have contributed to the fact that Schweizer’s work is constantly in movement and has a unique power of expression and a coherent dialogue between form and surface treatment, which she will no doubt continue to develop.