- Art & Design
This Belgian artist marks her territory in modern ceramic design. As a former art director at an advertising agency who became an artist, Alex Gabriels devotes her time to the creation of organically inspired ceramics: rough, yet soft.
The artist Alex Gabriels worked as an art director at an advertising agency for no less than twenty years before she found her passion in ceramics. ‘Ever since I was a child, my mother taught me that a table has to look nice and cosy, because then the food just tastes better and the moments at the table are magical,’ she says. Eventually, she started working in ceramics herself. ‘I bought myself a turntable and from then on the ball of clay really started rolling,’ she winked. She fell in love with the raw material and began the process of creating soft organic shapes into modern ceramic pieces that combine art, design and functionality. ‘I have only been working full time as a ceramist for two years but I am very grateful that my hobby has become my profession,’ the artist explains.
‘A beautiful balance between brutality and elegance’
Each piece is carefully created by hand, making each one unique. ‘My design style is brutalist but with style. For example, I work with robust clay but I make sure that the shapes are right and that the finish is good. It has a nice balance between brutality and elegance. The perfect imperfection.’ Gabriels makes functional ceramics but considers them rather decorative ceramics. ‘Just because it's “utilitarian” doesn't mean it shouldn't look good. So my aim is that it is too beautiful to end up in the cupboard and therefore deserves to be there.’ She gets her inspiration mainly from her own surroundings. ‘Especially looking around a lot, both in nature, on the street, in cafes, museums, restaurants, online, saving other ceramics, art, images and making my own interpretation of it. The impulses that I receive during the day often stay in my head and I continue to work with them in order to come to my own “creations”. My years of experience in advertising have also helped me in the area of aesthetics.’ We are big fans of Gabriels' unique, pure designs. We wish her and her studio all the best in the future. If you want to learn more about The Addresses, be sure to read our full article in Imagicasa Spring 2022.
Images courtesy of Alex Gabriels