Artist - Katerina Smoldyreva

Katerina Smoldyreva is a Russian artist who lives and works in New Plymouth, New Zealand. A graduate of Bashkir State University, majoring in a study of languages and literature, and having an intense interest in art and history, she developed an interest in figurative sculpture and ceramic clays very early in her career.
Having a particular curiosity about the human form, she puts the human condition at the forefront of everything she creates, believing that humanity changes every moment but it also retains mankind’s truest values through the centuries.
Katerina has been always fascinated by the basic, rudimentary, primordial quality of clay. Its versatility and “magic”, its stubbornness and pliancy.
Her work feels as ancient as the earliest sculptures and nevertheless has a modernity all of its own.
Before moving to New Zealand Katerina has been teaching ceramic sculpture for over 9 years at the Dubai International Art Centre, where she was also the Cultural Director and the Head of the Ceramic Arts department.
Katerina has participated in numerous individual and group shows around the UAE and New Zealand, her works are in a host of private collections located throughout the world.

"I do not ask myself why I sculpt - I just cannot do without it. Everything I see around me, everything I touch, hear or read, I try to imagine in clay and it is always about the figure.
There are always two sides to each sculpture – the thin shell made of clay, cold and static, and those deeply human emotions, which it envelops. My desire is to reveal our vulnerabilities, anxieties and uncertainties behind that thin, fragile, skin- like capsule.
The clay is everything to me: I like to touch it, manipulate it, to feel its texture under my fingers. I am impatient of that moment when the form starts to appear and imagine how it would look like when the work is complete. It is always the ongoing experiment with form, texture and colour that excites me and makes me go on."

Darkness in a Sound was a solo exhibition of ceramic sculptures at Kina Gallery May 2018.
It is an exploration into the spontaneity of emotion through gestural expression in performance arts, transferred into sculpture. 
The sculptural forms are static by definition, infused with heightened emotions, they obtain a certain vitality. 
Paused at a particular moment in time, they startle with their energy, they scream without a sound, they move without motion. 
Their faces are masks. Are they hiding or are they revealing? 
Greek tragedy, Butoh, Ballets Russes, Commedia Dell’Arte, Duende, Haal... blending the unblendable in search of new expressions.