To Inspire and Get Inspired - Belen Berganza
Who is Belen? What do you do?
I am Belen Berganza, a ceramic artist based in Fremantle, Western Australia. I create unique, contemporary, sustainable handmade ceramics using porcelain and earthenware. I want to offer products that are not disposable, have a timelessness and are worthy of being passed on through the generations.
I studied ceramics for four years in Madrid, which enabled me to combine my love of art with the formal training necessary to develop high-quality designs.
I love to create, carve and play with clay using a combination of different mediums and techniques, Porcelain is one of my favourite materials as it has great versatility. Its smoothness is useful for hand-carving the very detailed jewellery designs, the twinkling sound after firing is perfect for wind chimes and the translucent quality for ambiance lighting.
Belen wears Wrap Shirt Pomegranate and Fold Pants - Jaipur Floral
What brought you to associate with Gaelle from The ANJELMS Project?
I participate at Perth Upmarket selling my porcelain pieces and my friend Mel (22 Folds) recommended that I bring my wares to Collab, Gaelle's store, a retail platform for Australian creatives in Fremantle and we have since worked together, also on community projects like the Fremantle Fair Fashion Festival where I created a ceramic installation focusing on consciousness and community. It was one of the most fun projects I have been involved in!
Belen wears Long Button Tie Dress - Indigo Stripes and Fold Pants - Jaipur Floral
As a maker, what inspires you to create?
Since I was very young, I enjoyed creating things with my hands. I discovered clay as a great medium to work with, so by studying ceramics and practicing for many, many hours I became good at it and enjoy it very much. I get lost in my mind. That is my main inspiration, also the nature around me and people.
Belen wears Wrap Shirt - Kashmiri Leaf and Wrap Skirt Long - Indigo Stripes
At The ANJELMS Project, we believe the key for people to reconnect and embrace slow fashion is to educate them about the processes involved in the making. How important is the ritual of making in your life?
The process, the internal peace, focus and joy of creating a piece of ceramic is the main reason to start in the first place. The excitement of the moment when I open the kiln door after a firing and see the magic of the transformation from raw clay to an object that you can use. I make the time to create the space between my daily life and the artistic practice which allows me to become an instrument in service to the creative process.
Belen wears Long Sleeve Shirt Dress - Indigo Stripes
Is craftsmanship a way to communicate and connect with your community and how is it best achieved?
I feel that being active and participating in what is happening in my community, keeping all my senses open to see where and what people and nature around me are having as their interests and needs.
Even though for a ceramic artist it is a challenge to not get lost in “the workshop world”.
Belen wears Drawstring Jumpsuit - Jaipur Floral
What would you like your legacy to be?
To be an inspiration for others to do what you love and enjoy it every single moment. Have no fear of doing what you love. Just do it. It has worked well all my life.