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The National Portrait Gallery acknowledges the Traditional Custodians of Country throughout Australia and recognises the continuing connection to lands, waters and communities. We pay our respect to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander cultures and to Elders both past and present.

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Marea Gazzard

In their own words

Recorded 1972

Marea Gazzard
Audio: 2 minutes

I think the thing that really concerns me is form. Sometimes I’m asked where I get my ideas from and it’s hard to say, sometimes it might be sitting in a movie, just a certain shape flicks across the screen and I think ‘That’s just what I’m looking for’, or on a beach a piece of driftwood, or in the park a squashed fig. Anything can supply it when you’re looking, when you’re feeling the need for a new idea.

I’d say that the curve is the thing that interests me, seldom the straight line in an object. I’m very sensitive to curves, a wrong curve can ruin it from the first half-inch. If I know it’s somehow not going to be right, I just break it up. I break up a lot of things; in fact in my studio at the moment I can see six or eight things that I will no doubt smash up. Perhaps it’s the scale that’s important in what I do. I keep being dissatisfied with small things, though they can be fun to do at times. I want to do bigger, more massive objects.

I never feel so happy as when I’m quietly working alone. And I have everything here to make my work, the kiln, all. An artist has to be very close to his work. I know when I’ve been looking in museums, I’ve often felt that I’ve known the person who’s made that object. Perhaps this doing of one’s own work, one’s own thing, perhaps this is the link between civilisations. Other civilisations have tried to leave us what they knew. Perhaps this is what it’s about.

Acknowledgements

This oral history of Marea Gazzard is from the De Berg Collection in the National Library of Australia. For more information, or to hear full versions of the recordings, visit the National Library of Australia website.

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Marea Gazzard

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The National Portrait Gallery acknowledges the Traditional Custodians of Country throughout Australia and recognises the continuing connection to lands, waters and communities. We pay our respect to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander cultures and to Elders both past and present.

Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander viewers are warned that this website contains images of deceased persons.

The National Portrait Gallery is an Australian Government Agency