Australian ceramicist, Raphy (Raphael Karanikos) creates self-exploratory vessels. Raphy’s vessels are frequently self-portraits and range in subject from head studies to depictions of familiar places, people and situations. The forms he employs are iconic features from his Greek heritage, such as the Kantharos, Krater, Kylix, Bong and many others. It’s clear the artist is interested in making a serious inquiry into his familial identity, but the work never materializes in a traditional or conventional manner. In the words of the artist, he is “a very silly boy.”

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‘Cruisin’ examines the analogous relationship between searching through hard rubbish piles and cruising for anonymous sex. Throughout recent history, Queer people have been banished to the shadows and forced to meet in quiet, hidden spaces such as toilet blocks and parks. In a similar sense, searching through other people’s garbage for treasure is an act that has often been seen as uncouth. Both these acts require stealth, secrecy and the cover of night.
By using tiles found in hard rubbish as well as broken pieces of the artist’s own work, Crusin’ aims to illuminate the darkness by contending that there is treasure in other’s trash and there is beauty in the beat.

Crusin’ was created using tiles that were found in hard rubbish, excess blank tiles from R L Foote Design Studio that were coloured using rejected glaze samples. as well as smashed up vessels from Raphy’s own practice. The piece was framed using scrap bits of Tasmanian Oak. The result is a combination of found, reused and created materials to form new work.’ 

- Raphy