Alexandra Copeland

Curriculum Vitae

Born Alexandra Hipwell, December 18, 1947, Melbourne.

1966-68  Completed Film and Television Production and Design at Swinburne, Melbourne. Alumna, School of Film and Television, Victoria College of the Arts, Melbourne.

1969-70  Production manager in Australian film industry. Beginning of work in maiolica ceramics. Work in printmaking and painting.                                       

1971-72  Extensive travel in Asia, Europe and North Africa. Visited major museums and collections including studio of Bernard Leach, Museum of Ceramics at Faenza, Matisse chapel at Vence, Picasso's pottery studio at Vallauris.

1973-83  Painting, work in ceramics, while dealing in tribal art and textiles. Travel in this period included a visit to the U.K., and extensive travel in South-east Asia, Afghanistan and India. Tribal art and textile collections shown and acquired by National Gallery of Victoria and National Gallery of Australia.

1983 First solo exhibition at Distelfink Gallery in Melbourne with acquisition by National Gallery of Victoria. Later purchase by National Gallery of Australia. From this time, continuous program of exhibitions leading to eventual full-time work in ceramics.

1989  Extensive travel in China. Visited Japan to study ceramics at museums and arranged gallery representation. Eight subsequent exhibitions of ceramics and paintings in Japan.

1992  Awarded a grant by the Australia Council for the Arts towards study of glaze painted ceramics in Italy and Turkey.

1993 Worked at maiolica ceramics studios in Deruta, Italy for two months. Work acquired by the Museo Communale, Deruta. One month studying traditional Islamic maiolica techniques in Kutahya, Turkey.

1994 Accepted by judging for entry to 14th Biennale Internationale de Ceramique d'Arte, Vallauris, France, and Biennial of Ceramic Art, Spiez Switzerland. Awarded third prize at Spiez. Invited by judges to exhibit 15 large works in solo exhibition at Spiez, Switzerland.

1995  Invited to exhibit at the City of Hamilton Art Gallery and address the gallery society.

1996  Invited to exhibit at the Bendigo Art Gallery.

1997  Two months Artist in Residence at Dartington Pottery, Devon, UK, and completed work for exhibition and sale in Britain.

1998  Invited to work for two months at Dartington Pottery to complete work for exhibition in Britain and Australia. Authored and published An Artist’s Travel Guide to the Ceramics Museums of Europe.

1999  Returned for two months residency at Dartington Pottery in May and June, and again in September and October. Address at  National Gallery of Victoria: Maiolica: A Personal Approach.

2000  Invited to exhibit in Seduced by Colour: the New Maiolica at the George R. Gardiner Museum of Ceramic Art, Toronto, and to take part in Historical and Contemporary Maiolica symposium on Maiolica ceramics. Invited exhibitor in Ceramics: The Australian Context at the Campbelltown City Art Gallery, NSW. Two months residency at Dartington Pottery in May and June.

2001  Two months residency at Dartington Pottery in June and July. Work featured at New York Gift Fair, and in Top Drawer (British Crafts Council). Invited to exhibit at Asia-Pacific Contemporary Ceramic Art Exhibition, Taiwan. Visited Ichon Ceramics Festival, South Korea.

2002  Represented Australia at the Asia-Pacific Contemporary Ceramic Art Exhibition, Taiwan.

2003  Worked in ceramics studios at Lampang, Thailand. Visited Jingdezhen, China, twice. Worked in studio with Chinese artist Lou Wei.

2004 Established weaving project. Designing and supervising rugs woven by women in Afghanistan.

2006  Five weeks at porcelain studio in Jingdezhen , China producing exhibition work.

2008  Ongoing painting. Ongoing designing of hand woven rugs. Dealing in Central Asian tribal and traditional textiles.

2010 Five weeks at porcelain studio in Jingdezhen, China, producing exhibition work. Exhibition of soumak carpets and porcelain at Joss Graham Gallery, London,UK.

2012 Work exhibited at retrospective, Potters Cottage: a Tribute, at Manningham Art Gallery. Red Chair: floor talk at Shire of Nillumbik.

2013  Seven weeks at porcelain studio in Jingdezhen, China. Recent Work. Exhibition at Weft, Melbourne.

2014 Eight weeks at porcelain studio in Jingdezhen, China . Exhibitions at Hill Smith Fine Art Gallery, Adelaide; QDOS, Lorne; and Weft, Melbourne.

2015 Eight weeks at porcelain studio in Jingdezhen, China.


Selected Solo Exhibitions:

1983 Distelfink Gallery, Melbourne.

1984 Noel's Gallery, Red Hill.

1988 Christine Abrahams Gallery, Melbourne.

1989 Distelfink Gallery, Melbourne.

1990 Kazuha Gallery, Osaka, Japan.

     Maruzen Gallery, Kyoto, Japan.

     Seibu Gallery, Takarazuka, Japan.

     Nishinotoin Gallery, Kyoto, Japan.

     Gallery Nakajima, Amagasaki, Hoygo, Japan

     Mitsukoshi Gion Gallery, Kyoto, Japan.

     Christine Abrahams Gallery, Melbourne.

     Seiyu Art Salon, Osaka, Japan.

1991 Gallery Miyabi, Osaka, Japan.

1992 Christine Abrahams Gallery, Melbourne.

1994 Christine Abrahams Gallery, Melbourne.

     QDOS, Lorne.

     Director’s Choice,  Biennial of Ceramic Art, Spiez, Switzerland

 BMGArt, Adelaide.

     Solander Gallery, Canberra.

1995 City of Hamilton Art Gallery.

     Cintra Galleries, Brisbane.

1996 Quadrivium Gallery, Sydney

     Bendigo Art Gallery, Victoria

     Cintra Galleries, Brisbane

     BMGArt, Adelaide

1997 Beaver Galleries, Canberra

1998 Group exhibitions at Dartington Pottery, England, and associated exhibitions at Bristol, London and New York

     Mornington Peninsula Art Gallery

     Cintra Galleries, Brisbane

1999 BMGArt, Adelaide

     Solander Gallery, Canberra

2000 Ceramics: The Australian Context, Campbelltown City Art Gallery, NSW    

    Seduced by Colour: the New Maiolica. George R. Gardiner Museum of Ceramic Art,       Toronto.

    Jan Murphy Gallery, Brisbane

2001 William & Walnut Studio, Melbourne

2002 Hill-Smith Fine Art Gallery, Adelaide

2003 Jan Murphy Gallery, Brisbane

2004 Hill-Smith Fine Art Gallery, Adelaide

2007  Weft, Melbourne. (Retrospective)

2010  City of Glen Eira Gallery, Melbourne

2010 Joss Graham Gallery, London

2011 Ten Views of a Chinese Jar. Weft, Melbourne

2013 Recent Work. Weft, Melbourne.

2014 Hill-Smith Fine Art Gallery, Adelaide

 QDOS, Lorne

 Weft, Melbourne

2015 Weft, Melbourne


National Gallery of Australia, Canberra

National Gallery of Victoria, Melbourne

Queensland Art Gallery, Brisbane

Tasmanian Museum & Art Gallery, Hobart

Victoria College of the Arts, Margaret Lawrence Collection

Museo Communale, Deruta, Italy

City of Obu Collection, Obu, Japan

Artbank, Sydney, 1990, 1994

Art Gallery of Ballarat, Victoria

Shepparton Art Gallery, Victoria

Campaspe Regional Art Gallery, Victoria

Perc Tucker Regional Gallery, Townsville

Campbelltown City Art Gallery, NSW

Queensland University of Technology

St. Cyprian’s Anglican Church, North Adelaide

Residence of the Australian Ambassador, Warsaw

Smorgon Collection, Melbourne

Australian Securities Commission, Sydney

Private collections in all Australian capital cities, Los Angeles, Chicago, Toronto, Miami, London, Barcelona, Munich, Geneva, Berne, Colombo, Osaka and Kyoto.

Published Work written by Alexandra Copeland:

Costumes and Accessories from Central Asia. Exhibition catalogue, National Gallery of Victoria, 1979

Art Monthly, September, 1993. Sins of Commission.    

Art Monthly, December, 1993. In Deruta

Craft Victoria, April, 1994. A Sojourn in Italy.                    

Ceramics Art and Perception - issue 24, 1996,  A Painter of Pots.

Ceramics Technical - issue 2, 1996. Maiolica - A Personal Approach

Art Monthly - 1996. Some Thoughts on Art, Craft, Meaning and the Market

Ceramics Art and Perception - issue 32, 1998, Dartington.

An Artist’s Guide to the Ceramics Museums of Europe. Artist’s Travel Guides, 1999

1999 Sydney Myer Fund International Ceramics Award. A Commentary

The Fin, Australian Financial Review May 12,1999. In History’s Firing Line.

Ceramics Technical – issue 11, 2000, Contemporary Maiolica in Toronto

Ceramics Technical – issue 12, 2001, Ichon Ceramics Festival, South Korea

Publications including work by Alexandra Copeland

The New Maiolica: Contemporary Approaches to Colour and Technique. Matthias Ostermann.
A & C Black (London, UK), University of Pennsylvania Press (Philadelphia, USA) and Allen and Unwin Pty Ltd., (Sydney, Australia). 1999

The Ceramic Narrative. Matthias Ostermann.  A&C Black (London, UK), University of Pennsylvania Press (Philadelphia, USA) and Allen and Unwin Pty Ltd., (Sydney, Australia). 2006

Masters: Earthenware. Matthias Osterman. Lark Books, New York, 2010

World of Interiors magazine. November,2010


Shepparton Art Gallery Sidney Myer Fund Award, 1992,  judge  Gwyn Hansen-Pigott.

Australia Council for the Arts Artist's Development Grant, 1992.

Eugene Kupsch Award for Ceramics,  Mornington Peninsula, 1994, judge Kenneth Hood.

14th Biennial of Ceramic Art, Spiez, Switzerland, Third Prize, 1994.