Ceramics Now Magazine launches Issue 2 -
Ceramics Now has the pleasure to invite you to the launch of Ceramics Now Magazine - Issue 2, March 29, from 6 PM, at The Paintbrush Factory (First Floor), Cluj-Napoca, Romania.
Issue Two introduces the work of over 35 international artists, beginning with Ken Eastman, Kimberly Cook, Patricia Sannit, Marianne McGrath, Annie Woodford, Suzanne Stumpf or Ruth Power, and continuing with a special feature on Romanian ceramic artists, and a preview feature for Copenhagen Ceramics gallery. The issue also inaugurates the magazines’ new review category.
Ceramics Now’s goal is to make contemporary ceramics a more visible art field through editing publications and organizing exhibitions, workshops and lectures. The online platform and the magazine unites artists from different communities and facilitates idea exchange between them and the public.
The magazine is distributed in a network of libraries, galleries and institutions all over the world and can be bought online for $15. Ceramics Now is a non-profit organization created by a team of artists and students in Cluj-Napoca, Romania.
The Paintbrush Factory is a contemporary art space located at 59-61 Henri Barbusse street.
Read more about the magazine / Download press release / Facebook event
Although the number of contemporary ceramic artists is relatively small, the capacity of ceramics to encompass a broad range of concepts, techniques, and materials in comparison with other arts is surprisingly big. In this issue, as well as in our first, we present artists who work with different materials and techniques, but more importantly, each of them displays a distinct idea, a little hint of what he and his passion are made of. Through the interviews and articles we have included, we want at least a part of the artists’ ideas to be ridden, passed along, and to contribute to the advancement of contemporary ceramics.
While being creative in a field as diverse as contemporary art, it is almost impossible not to draw parallels between your work and someone else’s which was probably created in a media different from the one you use. This happens inevitably, and in my opinion, it always has a purpose – either predefined or not. Even if a parallel is found, each artistic endeavor has its own origin and, at least for the creator, a unique purpose. A new level is reached when the uniqueness of the artistic initiative is recognized and supported by an entire community.
Over the past year, Ceramics Now has become the largest online art platform dedicated to contemporary ceramics, and recently we have opened promotion to artists and galleries worldwide by application. This effort resulted from the wish to offer artists a platform to express themselves, but also from the desire to establish an accessible resource for everyone wanting to research and be inspired by contemporary ceramics. Since the launch of the first issue, we have been cited as a reference by numerous universities and colleges in the United States and Europe. This step was incredibly important for us because it has proven the value of the project and has kept us working hard. Although the current issue was published later than originally planned, what is important is that all the resources we gathered through this process have already traveled the internet in the meantime, creating a powerful community around us.
Our next goal is to become even more active in promoting contemporary ceramics on an international scale. Even though we have already organized four international exhibitions, with two being prepared for this year, all of these events so far have been held in Romania. In addition to inviting foreign artists to our beautiful country, we want to visit artists in their home countries and to organize events in as many places as possible for as many artists as possible. Key to our success will be greater financial stability and transitioning to full-time staffing of this project. It is a big step that can be possible with growing support from our readers. (An act of patronage has infinitely more value than a purchase.)
Editor at Ceramics Now
Harvard Art Museums present exhibition of Norma Jean Calderwood’s collection of Islamic Art
Includes Persian ceramics, illustrated manuscripts, drawings, and lacquerware
The Harvard Art Museums present In Harmony: The Norma Jean Calderwood Collection of Islamic Art, a special exhibition that showcases some 150 objects from the Persian cultural sphere, including luxury glazed ceramics of the early and medieval Islamic era, illustrated manuscripts of medieval epic poems, and lacquerware of the early modern era. The works in this little-known and largely unpublished collection represent 30 years of committed collecting by Mrs. Calderwood. In Harmony is on display January 31–June 1, 2013 at the Harvard Art Museums/Arthur M. Sackler Museum, 485 Broadway, Cambridge, MA.
The exhibition is curated by Mary McWilliams, Norma Jean Calderwood Curator of Islamic and Later Indian Art, Division of Asian and Mediterranean Art, Harvard Art Museums. An accompanying catalogue, edited by McWilliams, offers illustrated entries and nine essays written by distinguished scholars and conservation scientists from a broad range of specialties.
“In the decade since the Harvard Art Museums received the Norma Jean Calderwood Collection of Islamic Art, our gratitude has only increased for this magnificent gift,” said McWilliams. “Our research on the collection has inspired an even greater admiration and respect for Norma Jean’s knowledge and achievement. With this exhibition and catalogue, we hope to share with a broader audience the understanding we have gained of this beautiful and thoughtfully formed collection.”
“There has been exponential growth in the study of Islamic art in recent decades,” said Thomas W. Lentz, Elizabeth and John Moors Cabot Director of the Harvard Art Museums, “and Harvard University and the Harvard Art Museums have been at the forefront of this movement, with faculty, curators, students, and celebrated collections providing fertile ground for the field. The Calderwood Collection is a lasting contribution from a collector who understood the heart of our educational mission.”
Norma Jean Calderwood devoted much of her life to studying and teaching Islamic art and the complex of cultures in which it arose. She pursued graduate study in Islamic art at Harvard University, where she specialized in Persian manuscripts, and taught for many years at the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, and at Boston College. A gifted lecturer, she was also an intrepid traveler, crossing North Africa, the Middle East, and Central Asia to study the art and architecture of Islamic lands. For three decades beginning in 1968, she systematically acquired examples of the artistic tradition that captivated her.
Stanford and Norma Jean Calderwood were energetic and generous philanthropists in their adopted city of Boston. Institutions that have benefited directly from the Calderwoods’ generosity include the Boston Athenaeum, Boston College, the Cambridge Art Association, the Harvard Art Museums, the Huntington Theatre, the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum, the MacDowell Colony (Peterborough, NH), the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, and public broadcaster WGBH. Their private art collection was the most tangible and personal expression of the Calderwoods’ lifelong involvement in the arts, but also the one least known to the public.
The Calderwood Collection
The Calderwood Collection covers more than a thousand years of artistic achievement in the Persianate world during the Islamic era, principally through the media of ceramics, works on paper, and lacquer. The majority of objects were produced between the 9th and 19th centuries in Iran, Iraq, and parts of Central Asia. Initially attracted to luxury ceramics, Norma Jean Calderwood amassed 57 examples within a decade before shifting her attention to works on paper—illuminated and illustrated manuscript folios as well as single-page compositions. A handful of lacquer objects rounds out the collection. The collection was gifted to the Harvard Art Museums in 2002, and a subsequent exhibition of 46 objects, titled Closely Focused, Intensely Felt: Selections from the Norma Jean Calderwood Collection of Islamic Art, was held August 7, 2004–January 2, 2005 at the Sackler Museum. That exhibition marked the first public showing of a major portion of the collection.
To convey to her students the effect of a Persian painting, Norma Jean Calderwood said that its many visual elements “united to form a harmony.” The theme is eloquently expressed in some of the finest works in the Calderwood Collection, as well as in the total assembly, with objects resonating through contrasts and connections. This exhibition celebrates the scope of Calderwood’s achievement and the harmony of purposes that led to the gifting of the collection to the Harvard Art Museums.
Next stop: Milkwood Gallery, Cardiff, Wales
41 Lochaber Street, Roath, Cardiff CF24 3LS
Dates: March 14-25, 2013
Opening Reception: March 22, from 6 pm.
Fragile! In Transit is the initial project of the Project Network 3 (three) collective, a group of 9 ceramic artists from across Europe. Throughout the course of one year, the artists are sending 9 pieces of work on a journey by post to each of their countries of residence. Fragile! In Transit engages with and responds directly to the notion of place, identity and culture. All the work is designed to fit into a prescribed box of similar format and together forms an exhibition centering on the balance between reality, fiction and perception of place. The project has already travelled to Ireland, Denmark and England. Upcoming destinations include Finland and Italy.
Artists: Elodie Alexandre - France/India, Roberta Giussani - Italy, Joseph Hopkinson - Wales, Katja Kotikoski - Finland, Claire Muckian - Northern Ireland, Eglė Pakšytė - Lithuania, Jill Shaddock - England, Helene Søs Schjødts - Denmark, Katie Spragg - England.
The group met at a six week symposium for recent ceramic graduates at Guldagergaard International Ceramic Centre in Denmark last year.
Follow the exhibition on its journey at www.facebook.com/FragileInTransit
First edition, October 9 - November 3, 2013
Applications deadline: May 30, 2013
Cluj International Ceramics Biennale is the first contemporary ceramics biennale organized in Romania, and is aiming to become an international meeting place for ceramic artists. Artists from all over the world are invited to apply and participate at the biennale with their ceramic works. Apply now (Applications deadline: May 30, 2013).
Expressing artistic sensibilities using the means of ceramic art is on a growing scale amongst artists all over the world, and in the last years the contemporary ceramics field started to be seen as a contribution to the major arts. The first edition of the biennale has the potential to change old mentalities, focusing on the contemporary context and presenting the diversity of concepts and techniques in the innovative field of contemporary ceramics.
Cluj International Ceramics Biennale (CICB 2013) is organized by Ceramart Foundation and Ceramics Now Association, in partnership with Cluj-Napoca Art Museum, the University of Arts and Design Cluj-Napoca, and The Romanian Fine Artists Union. The ceramics biennale will be held in several locations in the city of Cluj-Napoca, Romania, during October 9 - November 3, 2013.
The CICB’s goal is to become a contemporary meeting point for ceramic artists from all over the world. This artistic event will introduce the Romanian public to contemporary ceramic artists, practices and new concepts in the field. The biennale will also get round national and international institutions to work together with the aim of creating a living environment for ceramics in the city of Cluj-Napoca.
The profound changes in the world today, whether socio-economic, political or techno-scientific, have strongly influenced the artists’ search for new ways of expression, and engendered a change in how the creative act is viewed, both in terms of means of expression and in terms of message.
Sensitive to the slightest changes of artistic canon in the global Agora of contemporary arts, ceramic art evolves toward an interdisciplinary and integrative strategy. The new concepts that are gaining ground in the field attest to an aesthetic simbiosis with forms of expressivity specific to other artistic fields, while at the same time, retaining and accentuating - an experimental development specific to the field. The outcome could form an ingenious and resourceful alchemy.
For more information, please read more on www.ceramicsbiennale.com or email firstname.lastname@example.org
The jury for the first edition of CICB:
Zehra Çobanlı - Artist and Dean of the Faculty of Fine Arts, Anadolu University, Eskişehir, Turkey.
David Jones - Artist and Senior Lecturer in Ceramics at the University of Wolverhampton, England.
Les Manning - Artist and former Vice-President of the International Academy of Ceramics Geneva and Founding Director of the Banff Centre for the Arts, Canada.
Cristina Popescu Russu - Artist and Vice-President of the Romanian Fine Artists Union, Romania.
Ting-Ju Shao - Artist and writer, former committee consultant for the Taiwan Ceramics Biennale and Taipei Ceramic Awards.
Blazenka Soic Stebih - Artist, President at KERAMEIKON and Director of the International Festival of Postmodern Ceramics and Ceramica Multiplex, Varazdin, Croatia.
Arina Ailincăi - Romanian Fine Artists Union
Marius Georgescu - University of Arts and Design Cluj-Napoca, Ceramart Foundation
Vasi Hîrdo - Ceramics Now Association
Călin Stegerean - Cluj-Napoca Museum of Art
Gavril Zmicală - Romulus Ladea Fine Arts High school
Leading Latvian and worldwide well known award winning porcelain and ceramics artists Ilona Romule and Peteris Martinsons invite artists to spend the summer together in Latvia, Zvartava manor.
During 21 – 31 July, 2013 in Zvartava manor will be held Masterclass “Lithophane” – a practice based workshop in lithophane technique by Ilona Romule for participants with figurative and narrative ideas.
„Lithophane” Masterclass will be followed by a Symposium “Masculine and feminine ceramics” which will take place from 2 – 12 August, 2013. The symposium will be led in tandem by Ilona Romule and Peteris Martinsons.
Three money prizes have been established for the best works created during the Symposium “Masculine and feminine ceramics”. Symposium masters - Ilona Romule and Peteris Martinsons - together with each Symposium participant will select one of the created artworks to be dedicated for the symposium exhibition and afterwards to be left at disposal of Symposium organizers.
From all selected artworks for the exhibition, Symposium masters will take the decision on 3 best works to be awarded with following money prizes – 250 EUR for the 1st place, 200 EUR for the 2nd place and 150 EUR for the 3rd best artwork.
For participation fees and application procedure, please see the official website www.symposiums.lv
You are also welcome to follow the updates on their Facebook page.
“In a continued effort to claim the functional surface of the dinner plate as a painting surface, REVERIE includes a new collection of historically sourced plate paintings. In response to the domestic nature of the galleries at the Philadelphia Art Alliance, I have designed “Tea for Two” a historic teacup inspired fabric wallpaper installation.
For REVERIE I worked closely with curators at The Clark Art Institute in Williamstown, MA to source their largely unviewed collection of historic teacups for “Tea for Two”, a fabric wallpaper installation. The story of Francine and Sterling Clark personally collecting hundreds of teacups over a lifetime now housed in the Clark Art Institute archives resonated with my own personal Metcalf family history of collecting and coveting decorative arts.
Rather than seeking source material from an additional museum collection for my new plate paintings in REVERIE, I chose to mine my own family’s collection of ceramic objects. My own family history of collecting resonated with the Francine and Sterling Clark cup collection. Thanks to the generosity of my family, my new plate paintings will be exhibited alongside the originals on loan for the duration of the exhibition.
REVERIE is a personal exploration of the relationship between the historic and the contemporary with artworks crossing over categories of decorative art, design and fine art. Fascinated by how we live with objects, how and why we acquire objects and what happens to them throughout history, I see this exhibition as a reflection of the life of surface pattern through the decorative art continuum.” Molly Hatch
“No art is simply, blithely contemporary. That would be like saying our parents had no influence on us. Today’s art responds to and reacts against yesterday’s art. Hatch serves up the magisterial landscape on a grid of 30 hand-painted ceramic dinner plates. The grid of circles cleverly breaks up and abstracts the scene, but doesn’t abandon its coherence. Indeed, it spotlights the mark-making.” Boston Globe Review of COVET: Modern Riffs on Old Ideas by Cate McQuaid, May 30, 2012
Artist and designer Molly Hatch grew up on an organic dairy farm in Vermont surrounded by a startlingly diverse set of visual influences: the earthy reality of rural life, and the mysterious, disembodied luxury of antique decorative objects from her mother’s family, prosperous Boston merchants who used Chinese export porcelain as ballast in their ships. Inspired by these two seemingly disparate family narratives, Hatch became an artist with a life-long passion for the decorative arts and the dialog between old and new. She has developed a robust studio practice that encompasses both works of art and design for industry, keenly aware of the different concerns and goals of each, while engaging with the ambiguity of objects that seem to exist in both the decorative and fine art realms.
The theme of ‘containment’ will be explored by fourteen Victorian artists for the 2012 Cicely & Colin Rigg Contemporary Design Award.
The Award focuses on contemporary design practice in Victoria and is arguably the most prestigious offered to a contemporary practitioner in Australia with a prize of $30,000 provided through the Cicely & Colin Rigg Bequest, managed by ANZ Trustees.
Tony Ellwood, NGV Director, said, “This year’s Award presents an exciting mix of Victorian artists and reflects the NGV’s ongoing commitment to contemporary design. The NGV is only able to stage this important event thanks to the vision of the Trustees of the Rigg Bequest and the foresight of the generous benefactors, Cicely and Colin Rigg.”
Teresa Zolnierkiewicz, Head of Philanthropy, ANZ Trustees, said, “The Rigg Bequest is a generous legacy of the late Colin Rigg (1895-1982). He was inspired by the Felton Bequest to create something in his own will that developed the arts in Victoria. This award, designed by the Trustees in partnership with the NGV, serves as a demonstration of the power of philanthropy to nurture and support artists and designers, vital to a thriving society.”
The participating artists in 2012 are: Garry Bish, Robin Bold, Emma Davies, Mark Edgoose, Neville French, Titania Henderson, Marian Hosking, Richard Morrell, Ian Mowbray, David Pottinger, David Ray, Owen Rye, Yhonnie Scarce and Katherine Wheeler.
Amanda Dunsmore, Curator, International Decorative Arts & Antiquities, NGV, said, “The choice of a theme for this year’s Award, rather than a specific area of practice, allows great scope for interpretation. Many of the works employ a sculptural aesthetic while remaining inherently functional, yet they play with the possibilities of what might be, beyond their practical value. Other works are presented in the context of a traditional concept.”
Previous recipients of the Cicely & Colin Rigg Contemporary Design Award are Neville Assad-Sadha (1994) for ceramics, Robert Baines (1997) for metalwork, Louise Weaver (2003) for textiles, Sally Marsland (2006) for jewellery and Simone LeAmon (2009) for seated furniture.
Emma Mayall, Assistant Curator, Contemporary Art, said, “This year’s group of artists represents a diverse mix of emerging and established practitioners. The vibrancy of Victorian design is highlighted through the wide range of practice and media represented, including ceramics, glass, metalwork, plastics and natural materials.”
The recipient of the 2012 Cicely & Colin Rigg Contemporary Design Award is Marian Hosking. The prize of $30,000 was awarded to Ms Hosking for her work Clearing. Ms Hosking said, “It’s an honour to be chosen for an award that celebrates the diversity and vibrancy of contemporary Victorian craft and design. I’m overwhelmed to be selected from such a stellar group and appreciate that craft is visible within the National Gallery of Victoria.”
New Blue and White at The Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, showcases inventive works in blue and white by 40 international artists and designers.
Contemporary sculpture, ceramics, fashion, glass, furniture, and more offer a new twist to age-old imagery
Over the past millennium, blue-and-white ceramics have become an international phenomenon—familiar as Dutch Delftware, Ming vases, and Blue Willow china, among other forms. Today, the popular ceramic medium continues to offer inspiration, especially to the more than 40 international artists and designers whose works are presented in New Blue and White at the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston (MFA). On view from February 20 through July 14 in the MFA’s Henry and Lois Foster Gallery, the exhibition highlights nearly 70 objects made over the course of the past 15 years across a wide array of media. Many of these works offer a contemporary twist to traditional blue-and-white imagery using abstraction, digital manipulation, contemporary subject matter, and even trompe l’oeil to surprise and delight. They range from small porcelains to room-size installations and include never-before-seen creations by artists such as Mark Cooper, Annabeth Rosen, Pouran Jinchi, and Kurt Weiser, and recent MFA acquisitions of work by fashion label Rodarte and ceramic sculptor Chris Antemann. Also on view are ceramics by Nakashima Harumi, Robert Dawson, and Steven Lee. The exhibition is presented with generous support from The Wornick Fund for Contemporary Craft. Additional support is provided by The John and Bette Cohen Fund for Contemporary Decorative Arts, and the Joel Alvord and Lisa Schmid Alvord Fund.
“The works in New Blue and White deftly show how one remarkable set of material traditions, which have had a profound international impact, can inspire new generations of artists. They make surprising, beautiful connections across time and cultures, helping us understand our history and our present,” said Malcolm Rogers, Ann and Graham Gund Director of the MFA.
At its simplest, blue and white refers to the application of cobalt pigment on white clay. It originated in 9th-century Mesopotamia and subsequently captured the imaginations of artists throughout Asia. Through a frenzy of trade networks and stylistic exchange, these coveted works made their way to Europe and eventually the New World. With them went multiple narratives focused on ideas as varied as wealth, power, beauty, family, exoticism, colonialism, and commerce. Inspired by this rich and varied global legacy, today’s artists create works that tell contemporary stories incorporating cultural, social, and historical references. To illustrate this, four themes will be presented to guide visitor engagement with the objects in the exhibition: Cultural Camouflage; Memory and Narrative; Abstract Interpretations; and Political Meaning.
Exhibiting artists: Ann Agee (US), Chris Antemann (US), Katsuyo Aoki (Japan), Felicity Aylieff (England), Robin Best (Australia), Stephen Bowers (Australia), Boym Partners [Constantin Boym (Russian) and Laurene Boym (American)], Caroline Cheng (England), Mark Cooper (US), Claire Curneen (Ireland), Robert Dawson (England), Barbara Diduk (US), Michelle Erickson (US), Front Design (Sofia Lagerkvist, Anna Lindren, Katja S’vstr’m, Charlotte von der Lancken) (Sweden), Gésine Hackenberg (Germany), Molly Hatch (US), Giselle Hicks (US), Sin Ying Ho (China), Pouran Jinchi (Iran), Hella Jongerius (Netherlands), Charles Krafft (US), Steven Lee (US), Li Lihong (China), Beth Lo (US), Livia Marin (Chile), Harumi Nakashima (Japan), Rodarte (Kate and Laura Mulleavy) (US), Annabeth Rosen (US), Richard Saja (US), Eduardo Sarabia (US), Paul Scott (England), Richard Shaw (US), Tommy Simpson (US), Caroline Slotte (Finland), Min-Jeong Song (Korea), Vipoo Srivilasa (Thailand), Kondô Takahiro (Japan), Brendan Tang (Canada), Studio Van Eijk & Van der Lubbe (Neils Van Eijk, Mirian Van der Lubbe) (Netherlands), Peter Walker (US), Kurt Weiser (US), Ah Xian (China).
In Women’s hands, an artwork by Italian artist Clara Garesio, created specifically for the High Level panel “The Power of Empowered Women” was donated by the delegation of the European Union on February 25 to the United Nations Office at Geneva where it will remain part of the permanent collection.
Clara Garesio created the ceramic artwork specifically for the High Level panel “The Power of Empowered Women”, an initiative of the 40 women ambassadors to the UN, aimed at showcasing the experience of engaged women from politics, business and civil society who have overcome obstacles and developed approaches to move gender equality forward.
Unveiling the work, a ceremony in the presence of UNOG Director-General Mr. Kassym-Jomart Tokayev, the EU Head of Delegation Mariangela Zappia said: “It is a special day for the European Union – as we offer the very first donation to the United Nations – and it is special for me as a woman since this beautiful piece of art is about the beauty, the simplicity and strength of women as positive transformative forces of our societies.”
Opening reception with the artist: March 14, 2013, from 6 pm.
Moving under the influence of Japanese pop culture and New Realism. Kinetic artist Vincent Leroy forms poetry with his technology. Movement and repetition redefine natural order and commanded creation. Electric Flowers absorbs a haunting and fascinating rhythm that reinforces the endless repetition of motifs. Thus this field of mechanical flowers whose petals turn tirelessly on their rolling pins becomes an unlikely ode to the fragility of nature.
Born in 1968, into a farming family in Avranches, in France’s Normandy region, Vincent Leroy graduated from the Ecole Nationale Superieure de Creation Industrielle in 1995. In his work as an industrial engineer, he maintains an overall perspective on the manufacturing process slecting shapes, materials, colors and technical properties. Active on the international contemporary art scene, Vincent Leroy is among those artists who refuse to be categorized.
“Creating an object usually starts with finding the right materials, but the starting point for my work is kinetics. I play around with the speed and the way actions have casting effects. Movement was the basis for my piece I created in London for The Sketch, the restaurant and gallery space developed by Mourad Mazouz. I installed a flexible geometrical shape powered by two large motors between two mirrored walls. The material used is made to ripple, and the movement is reflected infinitely in The mirrors. Similarly, in Berlin I showed three balls made of translucent material that were made to move completely independently. I installed a tiny camera inside one of them, to give visitors a random, unimpeded perspective, with no vertical reference points, a little like astronauts in the weightlessness of space, when they’re moving around the shuttle. I wanted to let the public experience the phenomenon with just the bare minimum of technological resources.
Simple movements still remain the basis of my work. Ten years ago my sculpture was more mechanically focused, the technology was present, more visibly a subject matter. Today the movement in my work is more fluid, and natural. I’m at a happy medium with this balance of nature verses machine, or nature as machine. We must come to mix and not oppose. My creative process is driven by a natural need to experiment. To question, guess, try, play, solve, function. Even if it is as basic as a piece of cardboard, glue and a toolbox. I am always surprised with the magic that emerges from these unexpected moments.
I think my audience is primarily people who are on top of the latest trends in art and in music, who are found in major cities. It’s also companies like Arkema and Renault, Nissan and Canal+ I’ve had the opportunity to work with. In many cases it’s an audience that doesn’t judge the work on the basis of whether it’s consistent with some artistic movement. They’re people who are capable of being won over or astonished by what they see. It gives me great pleasure to be able to reach such a wide audience.” Vincent Leroy