AnnaLeaClelia (Lea) Tunesi's practice is deeply informed by her knowledge of art history. Born and raised in Italy, Lea moved to London in 2000 and received her Ph.D. in Museology from the University of Leeds in 2014. After graduating, she began making ceramic sculptures informed by her dissertation on Stefano Bardini, a 19th-century Italian antiquities dealer. Much like the objects that Bardini sold, which were often pieced together from fragments of vessels made during the Renaissance or in ancient Rome, Tunesi's sculptures resemble pottery dug up from archaeological sites. "I wanted to make something perfect that was also imperfect," she says. "Objects that are originals but have all the qualities of a reconstituted artifact."
She calls her pieces "contemporary archaeology" and hopes that they anticipate the future by paying homage to the past in the present moment. "[I want to combine the] past, present, and something weird together, because I don't know exactly what the future will bring," she says.
Rough, uneven, full of holes, and sometimes even tilting, Tunesi's sculptures nevertheless have an ineffable beauty often enhanced by her use of bright pops of color. "Ceramics can be whatever you like as long as you know where you're going," she says.