“I am continually amazed at the interplay between color, light and space. I am also interested in perceptions of balance, particularly things being other than what they appear. I prefer to work in a gestural manner, without a clear end point, remaining open to possibility.
Clay is a wonderfully accessible and malleable medium with its own demands and constraints, moving from fluid to almost stone. Glaze presents another opportunity to say something, the fire (and in the case of raku, the thermal shock) having its way with the form, despite or enhancing my intention. A few years ago I began making monoprints and was captivated by the play of color on paper. The process lends itself to gestural application and combinations of ink, yielding a little bit of magic with a clean edge.” — SJT
Sarah Jaffe Turnbull grew up in Vermont, where she practiced law for many years before moving to the East end of Long Island. Turnbull continued her involvement in community issues including education, housing and health, while raising a family. In 2002, she began to explore ceramics, beginning with functional ware and moving into sculptural work.
Turnbull’s work has been shown in many regional galleries including Alex Ferrone Gallery, Cutchogue, NY; 4 Main Street, Southampton, NY; Southampton Cultural Center, Southampton, NY; folioeast, East Hampton; Kathryn Markel Gallery, Bridgehampton, NY, Lear Gallery, Sag Harbor, NY; Celadon Gallery, Watermill, NY; and the South Street Gallery, Greenport, NY. She has also exhibited in two Long Island Biennials at the Heckscher Art Museum in Huntington, NY.
rotating exhibit of current & recently sold mixed media
SARAH JAFFE TURNBULL speaks to folioeast’s COCO MYERS
CM/ WHAT MEDIA ARE YOU CURRENTLY WORKING IN?
SJT/ Ceramic sculpture and monoprints on paper.
CM/ WHY DO YOU LIKE WORKING IN CLAY?
SJT/ Clay is of the earth, and moves from almost liquid to almost stone, and those who work with it must respect its properties, and I like that fire is a great part of the process.
CM/ WHAT DRIVES YOUR AESTHETIC?
SJT/ I am interested in perceptions of things being other than what they appear. My sculptures are deceptively metallic-looking because of the glaze, which implies a strength, that on closer observation belies vulnerability. In other words, they look strong, but are actually breakable.
CM/ YOUR SHAPES ARE UNUSUAL. WHAT INSPIRED THEM?
SJT/ Some of the forms are architectonic, but out of balance, creating a different kind of tension.
CM/ IS THERE A SEASON OUT HERE THAT MOTIVATES YOU MOST?
SJT/ I prefer the sunny days of any season, and find that I may be more productive when the days are shorter.
CM/ DO YOU HAVE ANY WORKS BY EAST END ARTISTS IN YOUR HOME?
SJT/ Manoucher Yektai, Costantino Nivola, and Norman Jaffe.
PORTFOLIO OVERVIEW of mixed media
rotating exhibit of current & recently sold sculpture