Doris Lusk and the ice cream connection
Happy outings with five siblings crammed in their grandmother’s Mini inspired Christchurch ceramic artist Tatyanna Meharry’s tantalising ice cream sculptures.
Meharry, granddaughter of celebrated New Zealand artist Doris Lusk, is among a record number of sculptors taking part in the 10th anniversary of the South Island’s largest contemporary exhibition, Sculpture on the Peninsula, at Loudon Farm, Teddington, November 10-12.
Meharry does a lot of work with multiples, ’’so instead of making one ice cream, I make 20. They are a very generous ice cream, about 20cm long. If you were holding one you would happy.’’
Hers are topped with glittering glass bead ‘hundreds and thousands’, their jewel colours denoting their ‘flavours’, reminiscent of nostalgic spots around Christchurch and Banks Peninsula.
‘‘I did some work on Doris last year and started on ice blocks.’’ Meharry said. ‘‘Then I moved on to thinking about ice cream.
‘‘When we were growing up, my mother’s special treat on Sunday was to stay home in peace. Usually Nana would squash us in her tiny Morris and drive us anywhere there was scenery and use the trips as excuse to paint. If we were good, we’d get icecreams in cones.’’
Much of her work smacks of nostalgia. ‘‘Everyone’s life is so busy, you sometimes forget to reflect – like when summer comes around and you’d have that drive to beach or the river. That’s the kind of thing you remember.’’
Meharry, who with her sister Natasha English won the Supreme Award in the World of Wearable Arts Awards in Wellington in 2013, gained a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree at the Otago School of Art in jewellery and textiles and a Masters in Fine Arts in Community Art Education from Otago Polytechnic.
She now teaches ceramics for a third of the time, the rest is exhi-
‘‘Every so often, life kicks you up the bum.’’
bition work from her St Asaph St studio. She sells her ceramics wholesale around New Zealand.
‘‘Every so often, life kicks you up the bum. That’s what happened in the earthquakes. It’s a lifestyle choice. It’s not about bringing in money.’’
It was the smell of clay in her grandmother’s pottery studio that lingered as Meharry grew up. ‘‘That was something we were allowed to do in her studio space. Clay has a special smell. I just decided that was it.’’
Tatyanna Meharry with a bunch of her icecream ceramics, among her works to be shown at the 10th Banks Peninsula Sculpture Exhibition in November.