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Item Name: Ceramic
Title: Familiar But Foreign
Maker: Jeannie Mah
Year: 2000
Country: Canadian
Materials: photocopies on porcelain vessels, plinth
Measurements: various
ID Number: PC2001.15
Legal Status: PERMANENT COLLECTION


Extended Label Info: Jeannie Mah created these delicate sculptures using porcelain clay rolled into paper-thin sheets. Their shape is based on Mah’s fascination with ancient Greek pottery and fine French porcelain from the 18th century. In this series of artworks, Mah has used images of people and places from her immigrant family’s history. Ethnically Chinese-Canadian, Mah was born and grew up in Regina and helped with the family grocery store. To re-create the look of old photos onto the clay, she made image transfers of her family photos using photocopies with a toner that would bond to the clay during kiln firing and added under-glazes to create delicate colours, suggestive of tinted photographs. The fragile nature of this series highlights the precarious nature of memory and the importance of family stories. Jeannie Mah (1952 – ) earned a BEd at the University of Regina (1976) before studying ceramics at the Emily Carr College of Art and Design in Vancouver (1979), the Banff Centre (1984, 1988), before moving to France, to study at Université de Perpignan (1988) and Université de la Sorbonne (1989). Returning to the University of Regina, she earned a further Bachelor of Arts (1993), studying clay with reknown artist Jack Sures. An internationally-acclaimed ceramic artist, Jeannie Mah has exhibited nationally and internationally, and her work is in public and private collections around the world. She currently lives and works in Regina, often collaborating with other artists in video and film productions.