Of French origin, Laurent Craste has been living and working in Montreal for the past 22 years. His career has involved both a studio practice in contemporary ceramics and the teaching of ceramics at the college level.
‘At the heart of my artistic pursuit is the decorative object. My research centers on conceptual explorations of the multiple layers of meaning of decorative collectibles, in their sociological and historical dimensions, and also in their ideological and aesthetics ones. This approach takes its form in the re-appropriation of historical ceramic archetypes. My research considers the object as a social indicator, a ‘sign bearer’. Considered as instruments of political power, ideological vehicles, demonstrations of ostentatious luxury and economic power, but also as incarnations of emotions and experiences, the historical archetypes of decorative arts consummately provide me with useful material.’ – Laurent Craste
The ‘Abuse’ series of distorted vases actualizes the rage expressed in an earlier video depicting the artist in the process of digging. It also updates the strain inherent in any production requiring great skill: the portion of rejects brought to their ultimate point. A deliberately caused accident changes the appearance of the vases: soiled, covered with graffiti, trampled, cracked, nailed to the wall, subjected to the worst treatment, yet remaining recognizable. This violence is specifically that of the creator, since the absolute negation of the piece, smashing it to pieces, has not been implemented.