Jardinière in English refers to an ornamental dish, a receptacle or a stand in which a potted plant sits. Its function is to bring the wilds of nature into a domestic setting. In French the word denotes a 'gardener' - someone who tends to plants, flowers or vegetables, who seeks to cultivate and establish a sense of wonder - much like an artist.

Painter Ruth Waller and ceramicist Toni Warburton share a fascination with the earthenware artefact - vase, jar and figurine.  Their complicity has generated a dialogue in which they adapt and modify their idioms to establish a common ground.

For Warburton the container is an archetypal form. It is energised by associations with the earth. Alluding to coral species, algal blooms, fossilisation, and carapaces - her work is inspired by nature's diversity. She works between Gadigal and Gundungurra land.

For Ruth Waller "the motif of the vase or jardinière planter becomes a holder of the eye, a kind of key to the painting from which to push the play of figure/ground, shape/form and form/space in ambiguous ways." Ruth draws much of her inspiration from urban nature reserves in the suburbs of Canberra on Ngunnawal and Ngambri land.



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