Tel Aviv Jaffa
1. Garo and Sonia Sandrouni
Johnathan Hopp’s installation is a research space that surveys an ensemble of recent and new drawings and painted sketches, 3D renderings, experimental prototypes, fired and unfired ceramic objects designed and decorated by Hopp, as well as popular commercial pottery. The series entitled ‘Garo Sandrouni’ engages with Armenian folk ceramics, an iconic local tourist commodity that is sold throughout Israel, but especially in Jerusalem. The series includes found objects (Armenian style commercial pottery), and Hopp’s forms that were decorated by Garo and Sonia Sandrouni, a couple of highly esteemed Armenian potters from Jerusalem. Hopp’s response to the Sandrouni forms is articulated in a bisqueware series decorated with water colour paint.
A second series of poetic monologues explores form and surface. Some of the works present Hopp’s ongoing research into pattern via experimental print techniques. Others represent attempts to create new vessels that avoid established ceramic archetypes – seeking originality both in terms of form and surface.
Hopp’s ongoing research work into souvenir wares is based on his interest in these humble, domestic, popular objects to sites and signifiers of memory; personal, collective and national identity construction. As an Industrial Designer, he laments the apparent dearth of local design and craft history, and is interested in the mobility of iconic forms (both formal and graphic) – within the greater Mediterranean basin and on a more global scale. ‘Inconclusive conversations’ is an open and permeable display of work in progress, and these intimate dialogues are ongoing and incomplete. They map Hopp’s personal quest for identity construction as they investigate of tropes of the locality, self, and the ‘other’.
Thanks to Garo and Sonia Sandrouni for their masterful decoration, and especially Garo, for his insightful take on this project and his generous investment of time and expertise.