‘Those shapes did not satisfy me’ – Nastya

Hello, Nastya! May you introduce yourself and how did your art practice start?

Until 2020-2021, I could not understand at all who I am. But I realized that I have a need for self-expression, transformation of my emotions and experiences into material forms. Before the pandemic, I traveled a lot across Europe, in completely different conditions, companies or even alone. Once in Berlin, after a party, we went to a workshop space, where, among other things, there was a girl ceramist. That meeting affected my mind and outlook, and an invisible white thread ran all over my spine. After returning to Moscow, I went and bought immediately two pieces of clay. I have just tried it. Yes, I am self-taught, and because of it our acquaintance with clay lasted rather slowly. Once again I thought: ‘Vase’. We need to make a vase. I made several, sold some or gave them to friends. However, those shapes did not satisfy me.

So, how did you find an ideal shape?

Everything happened naturally. This is like a story about how humanity came to hot forging by accidentally falling it into a fire many thousands of years ago. Once, in the process of modeling, my workpiece fell to the floor, and the clay was formed in a special way, ‘its’ shape. From that time I see forms everywhere. They are following me. In any space – on the street, at home – there is always something to catch hold of. What is more, I notice that I am inspired by my own body, folded my legs, looked at the elbow, waist. Forms are everywhere.

What is your motivation to create?

Most important is that I figured out how to start, but the question still kept me going: ‘How can I express myself through clay?’ The craving for self-expression is one of my main motivators. Creativity is very irrational, but a meditative moment that does not always require knowledge and preparation. Modeling for me is sublimation, I collect in my head everything that I saw, learned, and in a special way I filter and release “steam”. I feel this way. I create my items on a whim. But I always know roughly what will happen. I can already see the shape before I start kneading the clay. I see form in music and one of my favorite musicians has influenced my work.

What is your art about?

My art is applied, sometimes combining three functions: utilitarian, aesthetic and artistic. But I want to give up direct functionality in my art. I create objects, and provide an opportunity to “animate” them the way that the person – who decided to acquire my art object – wishes. My objects are self-sufficient and free of purpose.

Which role does color play in your art?

I say STOP to colors. I believe that color seizes form. Either you do the color, or you do the shape. But I am really trying to solve my problems with colors. That is why my objects are of dull colors, but textured, taking over the forms and energy of natural landscapes, details of plants, trees, all any other living things.

Could you share your current clay experiments with us?

I am currently trying glaze coatings, but I do not have my own kiln, which greatly limits my experimentation. Therefore, I have to connect intuition and deduction at the same time. I do everything manually, I don’t have any tools. Table, rolling pin and material. And my hands, eyes and heart.

What is your mission as an artist?

I think that the mission of any artist is to show the world through the eyes of the creator, self-expression through any of the available ways. Finding someone to appreciate it, and this feedback kicks you further and further, inspiring you to create more. I have no mission. There is a way. The path is more important than the goal. More interesting and deeper. The path educates. Disciplines. The goal of nothing is movement of everything.

You are rock! Thanks for the interview and good luck in your growth.

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