Emma Christina Lucia Rochester Ph.D.



Emma C. L. Rochester's ceramic practice explores the transformative power of water and clay. The artist works at the intersection of these elements to perceive and represent bodies of water. Responding to oceans, lakes, and springs; from oceanic fossils to the new growth of coral blossoming. Rochester draws on memories of floating, swimming, snorkelling, and diving. She remembers an age of aquatic innocence, where in her youth, all she perceived of water was a fleeting beauty before an awareness of climate change and the degradation of water set in. The ocean as a site of personal and global renewal, salvation and transformation are key themes in her work and process. The mythological nature of springs, aqueducts, fountains and palatial water gardens create evocative dreamlike subjects.


Beyond clay, Rochester also engages with multiple art mediums; dissolving the boundaries between art and craft practices, and perceptions of low and high art. Weaving, textile surface manipulation, sculpture, drawing and new media are some of the tools that, the artist saturates to make contemporary artefacts. Unifying the process of making, Rochester begins with a reading of the landscape. Orientating herself by taking note of her imaginings, musings, natural responses, memory and sensual perception of place. Rochester then designs fabric which, incorporates these felt and unseen responses to each unique site. Once this fabric is made, she then returns to the studio or the original environment to create highly specific sculptures, photographic and video artworks; A process exemplified in her earlier works.