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Imperfect Harmony

Friday 17 April to Monday 4 May

Rene Viner's semi-abstract and expressionistic paintings, and hand-built ceramics, reflect the Japanese aesthetic of 'Wabi-sabi' - the beauty of imperfect harmony.

Rene Viner

René Viner is a mixed-media artist who is inspired by nature’s forms and structures. The sky, a constant changing palette, is of particular interest.

Her atmospheric paintings are semi-abstract and expressionistic, capturing the openness of the countryside. She works mainly on canvas, using acrylics and various other materials which she embeds within the painting to create texture and form. This allows a play of light and shadow on the surface.

René also hand-builds and manipulates clay into objects, while investigating the subtleties and effects of glazes upon her work. She fires to stoneware as well as earthenware and often adds 22 carat gold leaf to her finished pieces. She sees the ceramics as an extension of her paintings – and reflects that they teach her a valuable life lesson in patience and learning to cherish the unexpected.

René says:

The appreciation of the beauty of imperfect harmony is known in Japan as ‘Wabi-sabi’ – it’s a state of consciousness and is about enjoying the moment and life’s simple pleasures, and bringing more of these into our lives. It’s also the effect of time and weathering on an object, or the resulting beauty when something has happened by chance.

Wabi-sabiinvites us to set aside our pursuit of perfection and learn to appreciate the unaffected beauty of things as they are – the beauty of a delicate rose that will only be in bloom for the next few days…. favourite passages in a worn yellowed book, aged by the sun… the strandlines left by the outgoing tide…. delicate morning dew drops left on a garden leaf.

I hope my hand-built objects bring simple pleasure to those who choose to own them, and may they serve as a reminder to be true to ourselves and be happy with who we are.

For more about René and her work, see