Elizabeth Petcu had the good fortune to start her 'clay play' many years ago with Peter Brennan (1916-1995) – the renowned sculptor, artist and potter. Peter was teaching night classes at The Technical College in Blackrock, County Dublin, at the time. The revival of studio ceramics in Ireland was largely due to his pioneering work through the 1950s and 1960s.
A wonderful aspect of being Peter Brennan's student was the privilege of receiving an invitation to the studio he shared with his wife Helena who is also renowned for her skills at the wheel. In 1966 Peter and Helena were the first to make and exhibit hand-thrown stoneware and porcelain in Ireland. The visits to the studio left Elizabeth deeply inspired and kindled in her an aspiration to one day throw pots with a similar balanced beauty and fine evenness of section. Helena continues to inspire and mentor Elizabeth to this day.
Since her retirement from the RTE Concert Orchestra in 2006, Elizabeth has been able to focus more on her ceramic and art work, alongside her flute playing. Elizabeth's current ceramics tutor is Paul Martin (also a former student of Peter Brennan) who teaches at The Bray Institute of Further Education.
As a result of an end-of-year exhibition at the college in the summer of 2009, Elizabeth was invited by artist Brian Merry to exhibit at The Kilternan Gallery near Dublin. Entitled 'Birds, Wings and Flower Rings', the exhibition opened in November 2009.
This video clip features Allemande from Bach Sonata in A minor for solo flute. It is track six on Elizabeth Petcu's Just Me CD which is available from the homepage of this website.
Birds, Wings and Flower Rings consisted of Elizabeth Petcu's paintings, drawings, ceramics and flute performance. Opened by the renowned artist potter Helena Brennan, the exhibition was a huge success and the gallery ran out of red stickers on opening night!
Many of the pieces at this exhibition were musically inspired – most notably The Firebird, Variations on a Theme and the nursery rhymes in The Children's Corner. Passionate about music and ceramics, Elizabeth seeks to find ways of combining both and further exploring the crossover between music and art.
View images here: Birds, Wings and Flower Rings
Mill Cove Gallery specialises in Irish Ceramics and hosts the Irish Ceramic Awards annually. Their book, Irish Ceramics, is a showcase for the best of Irish ceramic sculpture and is launching the exhibtion at the Barony Centre in West Kilbride, Scotland. The exhibition begins on the 21st of September and runs to the 11th of November, 2012.