Laura Lightbody's work is a direct result of her life-long fascination for everyday stickers such as price tags, labels, barcodes, etc.
They are everywhere and for the most part ignored and discarded. When collected and collated they say a lot about our lifestyle, habits and consumption in our consumerist, commercial society. Her work is based on the principle of up-cycling, a definition of which is “to process used goods or waste material to produce something that is better than the original”.
Laura is originally from Glasgow and a graduate of the Glasgow School of Art. Her approach to ‘Upcycling’ is unconventional. Instead of repurposing something that has already been used, she reworks items that have never been used before. She applies hand-cut enamel transfers to blank fine bone china dinnerware that have been produced specifically from Stoke-on-Trent. These pure white ready-mades are beautiful in their own right and although serve a purpose; it is not until they are decorated that they become more individual, unique and no longer mass-produced.
Laura uses the refuse that invades our everyday, such as stickers, labels and signage as a starting point to make new work. She combines patterns and graphics from our environment to create ceramic collages. By presenting what may often be overlooked in a new way, focusing on narrative, commentary, aesthetic qualities and graphic language, she commits the temporary to the permanence of ceramics.
Her work draws attention to the minutiae of the day-to-day. By exhibiting her collection of ‘Wasteware’ she hopes to highlight our wasteful abuse of material and design, to draw attention, not just to packaging ephemera, but to the graphic sensibility embedded in each sticker she reproduces.
As part of this exhibition Laura invites you to send examples of graphics that you love. Use #wasteware to tag your favourite sticker on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram and help inspire Laura’s next body of work.