Friday, December 31, 2010


New Year's Day

Everyone has two birthdays
according to the English essayist Charles Lamb,
the day you were born and New Year's Day--

a droll observation to mull over
as I wait for the tea water to boil in a kitchen
that is being transformed by the morning light
into one of those brilliant rooms of Matisse.

"No one ever regarded the First of January
with indifference," writes Lamb,
for unlike Groundhog Day or the feast of the

this one marks nothing but the passage of time,
I realized, as I lowered a tin diving bell
of tea leaves into a little body of roiling water.

I admit to regarding my own birthday
as the joyous anniversary of my existence
probably because I was, and remain
to this day in late December, an only child.

And as an only child--
a tea-sipping, toast-nibbling only child
in a colorful room this morning--
I would welcome an extra birthday,
one more opportunity to stop what we are doing
for a moment and reflect on my being here on earth.

And one more might be a small consolation
to us all for having to face a death-day, too,
an X in a square
on some kitchen calendar of the future,

the day when each of us is thrown off the train of time
by a burly, heartless conductor
as it roars through the months and years,

party hats, candles, confetti, and horoscopes
billowing up in the turbulent storm of its wake.

Billy Collins
From Ballistics
(Random House, 2008)

Tuesday, December 21, 2010



These are images of some of Hennie Meyer's work on our show 'Ceramic Conversations' - although his work is very different from mine, in many ways it has been driven by a similar impetus.

The high quality of international craftsmanship and exploration of form and content, as well as exposure to historical ceramics via the wonderful London museums, has motivated both of us to internalise the awareness acquired through the experience and apply it in the South African context.

Thursday, December 16, 2010


One of my exhibition panels titled 'Eden' - a new palette and introduction of some relief and botanical imagery

Post exhibition frenzy, this morning my partner Albie referred me to the following passage in Mario Vargas Llosa's The Storyteller - an apt reminder of the need to return to a sane life again!

"The most important thing is not be impatient and allow what must happen to happen....If a man lives calmly, without getting impatient, he has time to think and to remember.
That way, he'll meet his destiny, perhaps. He'll live content, maybe. He won't forget what he's learned.

If he gets impatient, rushing to outstrip time, the world gets out of order, it seems.
(My emphasis)
And the soul falls into a spiderweb of mud.
That is confusion.... Then he doesn't know what to do, where to go. He doesn't know how to protect himself either, saying: What shall I do? What must I do?
Then the devils and the little devils creep into his life and play with it. The way, perhaps, that children play with frogs, making them jump. Mistakes are always the result of confusion, it seems."

Tuesday, December 14, 2010


Final touches done today, including placing 160 plus flowers in our wall of flower vases! I have to say - and I usually am far more reticent - that this is really an extraordinary show... More images of the exhibition will follow in the next days.

Monday, December 13, 2010


These are some of the side plates for the dining room installation at The Irma Stern Museum

Thursday, December 9, 2010


My work on this show seems rather diverse - in a way it is the result of many different creative directions...more to follow

Wednesday, December 8, 2010


This is a very frantic week finishing off work and setting up an exhibition at The Irma Stern Museum to open next week. This is a joint show together with Hennie Meyer, inspired by our annual 'pilgrimage' to participate in Ceramic Art London at the Royal College of Art. In the next few days - time permitting! - I will be posting images of the work to be exhibited , so if you can't get to the show, then watch this space!

An exhibition by Clementina van der Walt and Hennie Meyer
Reflections and influences inspired by an annual 'pilgrimage' to participate in Ceramic Art London at the Royal College of Art, London
To be opened by Robert Mulders, Chairperson of the Friends of the Iziko South African National Gallery
Tuesday, 14 December 2010
6.30 pm

Cecil Road, Rosebank, Cape Town 7700 Tel. 021 685 5686

Exhibition closes Saturday 15th January 2011

Furniture kindly loaned by Ebony

Wednesday, December 1, 2010


Furniture by Vogel

Table - Collaboration by Willem Boshoff and James Mudge

Sculptural felt by Ronel Jordaan

Wooden tables, lamps, chairs by David Krynauw

Quirky objets by Gerhardt and Anthony of Ceramic Matters

There was a wonderful article in this past Sunday Times on Ceramic Matters, highlighting their work and mentioning their stand at the Food Wine and Design Fair.
All the images above show some of the excellent design that was on show. It was truly a fabulous fair with a great vibe...