Tilmann Meyer-Faje

  • Born: 1971
  • Country: The Netherlands
  • Discipline: Artist
  • Website: www.tilmann.nl

Tilmann Meyer Faje (1971) is a Dutch/German artist who works and lives in Amsterdam where he graduated in 2000 from the Gerrit Rietveld Academy and the Sandberg Institute in 2004. In his work he focuses the failure of industrial processes. With his ceramic sculptures, he replicates contemporary constructions from our highly developed civilization and anticipates their decay. During the modeling, clay changes its consistence permanently, possibly due to temperature, moisture or weight – a process in which potentials he is highly interested in. He builds structures while they tumble down from their own weight. For his planned “failure experiments” the artist often uses the shape of ships as an analogy to what happens with us at the moment in the world. A big part of our consumption depends on transport with ships. People’s lives are depending on it, risking their lives in nature. Ships once break or become dismantled. Mainly they end up on an Indian beach. When a construction is dismantled its characteristics show up again. His first boat with a broken hull “Seelenverkäufer” is recently acquired to the collection of Stedelijk Museum in Den Bosch. Beside modeling sculptures Tilmann produces video animations with collapsing clay structures. With “Full speed ahead”  he recently produced a whole fleet of boats in the public studio at the European Ceramic Work Centre Sundaymorning@ekwc.

Project in Arita

  • Title : -
  • Period of Residency : June - August
  • Sponsor : Mondriaan Fund

The method of learning by observing himself in the process is something Tilmann wanted to continue in Arita. He also wanted to work with experienced local ceramists. What they create (plates, objects or art) or the techniques they use (like throwing or glazing) were of less importance to him. He was mainly interested to observe them at their routine.
Long, repetitive routines allow for a more thorough observation. By this process of observation I expect to arrive at a point where I start acting myself. As a consequence, the works I want to make can’t be planned in advance. They will result from processes conceived on the spot. The outcome of these processes should serve to comment on the conditions and materials employed in Arita. I might map out specific actions for elaboration in video or performance. This could also be done later, in a new setting in The Netherlands. For now, there is no preestablished result, except that I will try to show a ceramic production process in its entirety. How the basic material is dug up; the speed at which people work; the temperature, the smell, the light in the workshop and much more… These dimensions are just as important for the creation of a work as the colours of the glaze or the temperature at which it is fired.
This also means the result of my work period doesn’t necessarily have to be a porcelain object. It might be a composition of objects, photography or video fragments that document the atmosphere of the work environment and draw attention to various aspects of the overall work process. It could be details and sounds like brush strokes or dripping water and so on.