Tim Rowan

Tim Rowan Ceramics

Tim Rowan's profile on Ceramics Now - View works

Tim Rowan was born in 1967 in New York City and grew up in Connecticut, along the shore of Long Island Sound. His art education began during college, receiving a BFA from The State University of New York at New Paltz before journeying to Japan for 2 years to apprentice with ceramic artist Ryuichi Kakurezaki. Upon his return he worked briefly in studios in Massachusetts and New York before receiving his MFA from Pennsylvania State University.

He established his kiln and studio deep in the woods of the Hudson Valley in 2000, where he lives with his wife and son. His work has been represented in solo and group exhibitions internationally, most recently having solo shows at Yufuku Gallery in Tokyo, Japan and Cavin-Morris Gallery, in New York City. In September, 2013, Tim Rowans ceramic sculptures will be represented in a solo exhibition at Lacoste Gallery, in Concord, Massachusetts.

Rowans’ work is made, primarily, from native clay, direct from the earth and unprocessed. He works with geologists to locate local clay deposits and hand-digs selected sections of earth. The “impurities” in the clay are left to reveal themselves, upon sculpting and firing. The forms are slowly constructed from layers, built up over days and weeks, then hand-carved. They are fired for seven days and nights in a woodfueled kiln. No glaze is applied; the surface textures and colors are the result of the interaction of the clay, fly-ash, coals and fire.

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Interview with Liliana Folta

Interview with Liliana Folta / Spotlight
By Ileana Surducan
Published in Ceramics Now Magazine Issue 2

What sparked your interest for ceramics?

I was in college taking painting classes and I wanted to learn sculpture. One day I stopped by the sculpture lab to ask the instructor if I could audit the class. She agreed and handed me a piece of clay. I was amazed at the work of the students. A retired engineer was making intriguing ceramic sculptures. The forms were powerful and provocative. At that moment I thought of how versatile and expressive clay could be to express both powerful and delicate ideas. It was, for me, the medium of infinite possibilities.
Immediately my brain had an explosion of ideas. I fell in love. I realized I could create 3D from some ideas of my paintings. In fact, I ended up sculpting so many pieces during the class that The Art Department awarded me a grant to do a whole semester and also the first solo show ever done by a student in the college.

Liliana Folta Ceramics - An Abstract Poem of Freedom

Liliana Folta: An Abstract Poem of Freedom (detail), 2009, on going traveling/interaction/installation.
> View more works by Liliana Folta

Besides ceramic art, you have also created paintings and murals in order to express your inner universe. How does working in three dimensions change your creative process? Do the processes differ a lot between these mediums?

When I work in 3D, the process of creativity is more fluent, very spontaneous and I can communicate with feelings that I didn’t know I possessed until I felt them in my hands. I can transform them into something visual for others to see. It is a natural process, born of my subconscious. Back in my childhood, I recall helping my father in the garden and end up making objects with mud.

In my paintings, it’s me: my surroundings, my past and present, something very personal and intimate expressed through a different tactile experience.
As with murals, most of them have been collaborative works I’ve done with students at schools. The first one I made came out of the blue. A friend asked me for ideas on what to do with a wall where the tiles had been removed. I had the idea to teach the students about mural making and the importance of recycling material to make art. That’s how the first mural was born.

You express yourself freely using clay. What are the main materials and ceramic techniques that you use?

I like to experiment, so I have been using different kind of clay, such as stoneware, low and mid-fire with glazes and oxides. When I do mixed media, especially installations, I like to integrate other materials like metal, found objects and fresh water pearls. I use handmade techniques from slab, clay relief, and impressed texture to carving.


Your past experience and your personal history seem to be an important source of inspiration for you. Tell us more about the symbolism of your work.

Maybe that’s why I work in different mediums; I am much better expressing my self visually. Sometimes an image will stay with me and I am compelled to paint or sculpt it. Much later, I will realize that these images have a much deeper significance to me, one that transcends the visual. These images become symbols of social-political issues that are at the core of my world views and concerns. For example in the ceramic chains installation, the chains remain unconnected and loose, which symbolizes the right of freedom of the individual; regardless of religion, race, country, and gender. Freedom of expression is something that we, as humans should never have to give up.

Many of your works have an intrinsic femininity. How does being a female artist influence the themes and the ideas you choose to represent?

My themes and ideas begin with personal experiences, past, present, as well as everything that surrounds me: people, places and objects. Sometimes stories interact with different characters in different circumstances. I also like to create surreal landscapes for them.

The white flowers I used in the “Warrior’s Series”, are images from my bank of memories of my father’s garden; he used to mix the flowers in the vegetable garden, which was my play yard during my childhood. “After Chaos”, a woman sleeps peacefully. She is able to find tranquility because she is surrounded by “white warrior flowers” - deceptively frail, and yet possessing all of the strength of memories, nature and the power of womanhood. These flowers guard her as she rests before facing whatever trials the day may bring to her.

You come from Argentina, and you define yourself as a Latin American artist. How does your cultural heritage reflects in your creative experience?

My Latin American roots inform my work. I was born in Argentina, my parents were immigrants of the World War II, and so my back ground tradition at home had a strong European flavor. Even so, I grew up proud for the country that welcomed my parents and the country they taught me to love. Moreover, I am also married to a Puerto Rican man, my son was born on the island too and we spent many years there. This is yet another passage in my life, where the colors and details are reflected more in my paintings than in my ceramics. So you see, my cultural heritage is a potpourri of different tradition and experiences, and everything is reflected in my art.

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Michal Fargo

Michal Fargo Ceramics

Michal Fargo's profile on Ceramics Now - View the works

"In my work, I am driven by textures, materials and non-traditional working methods.

The main subject I deal with is the thin line between imitation and interpretation - My work portraits the contrast between an urban lifestyle and a remote admiration of nature. When I work, I use the most naive and (sometimes) barbaric techniques while facing industrial materials. I try to capture a longing for authentic nature and at the same time to celebrate its progress and many benefits, and perhaps combine both emotions into one.

If I had to sum my main ambition in my work I would say that I seek authenticity that comes from a personal aesthetic perception. The fine definitions of art, craft and design seem to me unnecessary in relation to my work. While working on a piece, it is not so much a ‘narrative’ that I’m after, but rather, visibility and the abstract feelings that may be summoned by viewing the form. 

As an artist I would like to think that I am a highly individual maker searching for an aesthetic vision that would be completely my own.” Michal Fargo

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Ryan Blackwell

Ryan Blackwell Ceramics, Featured on Ceramics Now Magazine - Contemporary ceramics

Ryan Blackwell's profile on Ceramics Now Magazine - View his works

Ryan Blackwell was born and raised in Indiana — receiving a BA in Studio Art from DePauw University in 2009. Expecting to graduate from the University of Massachusetts Dartmouth in the spring of 2013 with an MFA, Ryan intends to move to Brooklyn and continue his journey as an emerging artist.

“My practice is rooted in material investigation. I find my work in a consistent state of flux. Processes change and evolve, imagery comes and goes. This minute I’m steeped in symbolism, say, through the repetition of thousands of dustpans, while the other I’m firmly rooted in geometric abstraction.

My fluid framework reflects my experience of American culture—a place where I navigate free choice and inherent socio-political and economic constraints. Through symbols and materials of domesticity my works find some continuity. It is my intention to create works that, in relation to each other, seem as dichotomous as they are connected. Although materials and processes may seem disparate, they find connection through aesthetics and systematic repetition. It is through a controlled failure of my materials and systems that I find consistency. But of course, inconsistency is always present.” Ryan Blackwell

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Annie Woodford - Spotlight, October 2012

SPOTLIGHT, October 2012: Annie Woodford

Annie Woodford - Spotlight on Ceramics Now Magazine

Interview by Ileana Surducan and Vasi Hîrdo for Ceramics Now Magazine - Issue Two

You take your inspiration from nature. You are not just making a superficial observation, but you conduct a research of the things hidden to the naked eye. Tell us more about the universe you have discovered through your explorations.

I am fascinated by the natural world in its widest sense and at all levels. An interest in the nature of time - the past, present and future has led me to investigate multiverse theory and hidden dimensions - concealed worlds. From there I began to examine nature on a microscopic and nano scale. I became fascinated by the concept of the unseen and rendering it seen.

One of the subjects I investigated was that of diatoms, especially fossil diatoms. Invisible to the naked eye, beautiful and structurally complex I discovered them to bevery significanting the field of paleoclimatology - they are an important indicator of climate change.

I like to select various aspects of the natural world and then examine them on both a macroscopic and microscopic level, considering them in terms of their relationship to time and how they relate to other parts of the universe.

[] Read the full interview in Ceramics Now - Issue Two

Intricate but also delicate, your work seems to be obtained through a very meticulous process. What materials and techniques do you use and how much time does it take to complete a new piece?

Porcelain is the clay I favor - I particularly like ‘Southern Ice White’ which was developed by the Australian ceramicist Les Blakebrough. In general, the works are handbuilt; occasionally I use slip in a free but controlled way, sometimes combining it with fine glass fibre. I like to push the material beyond its perceived boundaries. The characteristics of porcelain mean that it requires careful handling throughout the making process and control and accuracy with firing and cooling.

I often incorporate extraneous materials once the piece is fired such as metal, monofilament, fibre or horsehair. These elements add richness to the work.

A new piece can take up to two weeks to make, depending on its complexity and it can take a further week or two to construct and apply other elements. I work intuitively when I am making, drawing on my research and bringing all the experiences together.

[] Read the full interview in Ceramics Now - Issue Two

Annie Woodford Contemporary Ceramics, Ceramics Now Magazine
Annie Woodford, Circlet, 2009, Porcelain, copper, stainless steel, 24 x 24 x 24 cm
View Annie Woodford’s works

Both science and art are a way of looking at the surrounding environment. What do you think is their meeting point? What kind of form of knowledge is art?

I often find myself working with scientists on projects and I think the two disciplines have many aspects in common. They both help us to understand the world around us. They both rely on investigation and imagination – the ‘what if?’ principle.

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Jason Hackett

Jason Hackett Contemporary Ceramics - featured on Ceramics Now Magazine

Jason Hackett's profile on Ceramics Now Magazine - View his works

“I understand the world in an evocative fashion and view my artworks as both physical and philosophical memorials to ‘Closeness’. During the construction of new works in series, I commonly consider ideas such as the value of community and family, the honesty of both gross and tedious labor, and the mysteriousness of the metaphysical.

I primarily construct pieces using my hands and molding methods while also using found manufactured ceramics. Captured materials, images and forms; of man and of machine; from immediate and distant pasts are merged in commemorative context where contemplation defines their functional nature. Individually they are cups, plaques, and cultural icons made in clay. Collectively, they express proximity and distance, material and immaterial, and both the tangible and intangible.” Jason Hackett

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1st Santorini Biennale of Arts: Open Call for Applications

The Inaugural Santorini Biennale of Arts: Open Call for Applications 2012

The Inaugural Santorini Biennale of Arts: Open Call for Ceramic Art
Submissions: March 6 - May 19, 2012

Dates: July 1 - September 30, 2012

Within the framework of the 1st Santorini Biennale of Arts in 2012, ceramic artists and potters are invited to send in their artworks for consideration for this international exhibition at which a meeting of artists from all over the world will present their latest achievements.

The 2012 theme, ‘The Past: Memory and Nostalgia’, will examine intrinsic experiences and social relationships, inspired by how humanity accumulates a catalog of our personal fabric and how these collected manifestations shape the patterns of our lives. The subject ‘The Past’ is an integral part of Ceramics. The medium reflects the Past by default. But we are asking for more than the obvious reference of technique, we want interpretations of scenarios, memories or objects from the Past, contemporary or otherwise. We want to forge pathways of communication linking the Past and Present. Special consideration will be given to artworks relating to Ceremony & Ritual and also to those that will form a connection with the space they will be presented within.  

The mission of the Biennale is to promote both emerging and established artists through a wide variety of disciplines; from Drawing, Graphic Design, Illustration, Collage and Comics, through Paper, Painting, Glass, Sculpture and Ceramics, to Photography, Short Film, Video Art, Installation and Industrial Design.
By means of an advanced framework of outreach activities the Biennale will also seek to cultivate the emerging spirit of the island, inviting all participants into an open dialogue concerning new ideas for social change.

The curatorial team
Dimitra Bratika and Michael Vlavianos (Photography), Sara Falanga (Glass Art and Graphic Art), iLya (Comics), Rajesh Punj (Sculpture and Installation), Alexa Kusber (Industrial Design), Tracey Holt Walkden (Ceramic Art), Tomas Poblete (Collage), Paola Gentili (Paper), Nicky Peacock (Illustration), Simon Tarrant (Painting), Anneca York (Drawing) and Holly Bynoe (Video Art and Short Film).

The open call for artist submissions is from March 6 through May 19, 2012.

For further information visit Santorini Biennale’s website.

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Annie Woodford

Annie Woodford Contemporary Ceramics, featured artist on Ceramics Now Magazine

Annie Woodford's profile on Ceramics Now Magazine - View her works

Intrigued by the tenuous connection between past, present and future and the shadowy, illusive meaning of time, Annie Woodford makes work that is both haunting and enigmatic. Shifting boundaries between science and metaphysics and an enduring interest in parallel universe theory instill the pieces with a heightened intensity, whilst an obsession with hidden worlds has prompted her investigations into microscopy and the nano universe - making the unseen seen.

Captivated by the natural world and our mysterious, infinite universe - whether seen at macroscopic or microscopic levels - she finds them the source of endless fascination and wonder. Mankind’s place within that universe and the dichotomy between our wish for progress and our proclivity for self-destruction, has become a central theme.

A passion for frozen environments and the message they embrace, not only from the past but also for the future of our planet has resulted in research trips to the Arctic and Iceland and a detailed study of the coldest place on Earth – Antarctica.

The work exhibits qualities that reflect the natural world, elements that highlight its beauty and transience. Fragile, frangible, complex and esoteric, delicately balanced between risk and control, her pieces float and oscillate between absence and presence, hovering silently in a place between.

‘Nature is an infinite sphere of which the center is everywhere and the circumference nowhere’ Blaise Pascal, mathematician, poet, philosopher.

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anim(us) / Stella Downer Fine Art, Sydney, Australia

animus exhbition at Stella Downer Fine Art, Sydney, Australia

anim(us) exhibition / Stella Downer Fine Art, Sydney, Australia
21 February – 17 March 2012

Opening recepetion on Saturday 25 February, 3-5 pm
Curated by Sarah Vandepeer.

Tanya Chaitow, Lynda Draper & Jacqui Hudson explore the relationship between emotion and creativity, producing uncanny works that teeter between the beautiful and the strange. Animal references found in the artists’ work made might be interpreted as manifestations of the animus ego, as defined by Carl Jung. The anima or animus is an anthropomorphic archetype that we only experience fleeting glimpses of in dreams and it is a powerful source of creative ability.

Ambiguity and whimsy are important elements in Tanya Chaitow’s work and her fanciful paintings and drawings blur past and present, fact and fiction, internal and external reality. By adopting a naïve style, she is able to work intuitively and her works are emotionally charged. In her work the deer appears as an archetype of the self. This susceptible figure floats through the tangled branches of Chaitow’s surreal dreamscapes, leaving us with a poignant sense of vulnerability. Born in Johannesburg, South Africa, Tanya Chaitow immigrated to Australia in 1978. She completed her Masters of Fine Art at the College of Fine Arts, University of New South Wales at the end of 2007. She is regularly selected for the Dobell Prize for Drawing and her work is represented in both public and private collections in Australia, South Africa and the USA.

Lynda Draper fashions ethereal sculptures from stoneware, using opaque white surfaces to evoke a sense of faded memories and nostalgia. Draper’s work is based on a belief that our interpretation of the world is drawn from a well of personal memories and experiences. Christian iconography, infantile animal shapes and strange organic growths all appear across her oeuvre, blended into quirky configurations that beguile or repel.

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Ken Price and Larry Bell / Kayne Griffin Corcoran, Santa Monica, USA

Ken Price and Larry Bell exhibition at Kayne Griffin Corcoran Gallery, Santa Monica

Ken Price and Larry Bell / Kayne Griffin Corcoran, Santa Monica, CA, USA
January 20 – March 3, 2012

Kayne Griffin Corcoran is pleased to announce an exhibition of work by Ken Price and Larry Bell. The exhibition explores the divergent paths taken by these two artists who both started their careers in the early 1960s at the influential Ferus Gallery in Los Angeles.

Ken Price’s sculpture has defied convention since the 1960s. The colorful and willfully deviant ceramic sculptures in this exhibition refer to excavated landscapes, ancient architecture, and amoeba-like forms while at the same time remaining defiantly abstract. Price’s intention with these sculptures is to create “an organic fusion of color with surface form.” He applies layer upon layer of paint to the sculpture and then sands the surface to expose the various layers of color beneath. His sculptures from the late 1980s and early 1990s are an exercise in excavation. The organically-shaped sculptures appear to have been sliced open, revealing black polygons on the interior of the sculpture that read as voids. His later works are reminiscent of blobs with mottled surfaces often in a pearlescent finish.

The hard-edged geometry of Larry Bell’s works contrast sharply with Price’s organic forms. Bell’s glass cubes address the dematerialization of the object. Using a dichroic vacuum coating to line the interiors of the glass cubes, Bell creates objects that are at once reflective and seem to disappear. This emphasis on perceptualism aligned Bell with the Light and Space movement in California in the 1970s. This exhibition will include several examples of early Bell cubes as well as a shelf from 1970.

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Deborah Britt

Deborah Britt Pottery - Ceramics

Deborah Britt's profile on Ceramics Now Magazine - View her works

“My work mainly consists of salt-fired Porcelain and Stoneware. The salt-firing process is unique in that salt is introduced into the kiln when it reaches the proper temperature (2345 degrees F for my work). Inside the kiln, the salt vaporizes and settles onto the pieces, forming its own glaze over the clay body. I also use various slips and glazes to further decorate the pots.

In my functional work, my goal is to make the pieces “special”. I hope that everyday users will appreciate being “in the moment” as they sip from their hand-made cup or enjoy soup from their favorite bowl.

My sculptural pieces all have specific meaning for me, but sometimes are just fun! I don’t wish to impose my views of the work upon others, but would rather viewers lend their own interpretation to the pieces within their own contexts and ideas. Most importantly, I hope the sculptures will inspire viewers to pause and consider how the piece relates to their lives.” Deborah Britt

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Marie T. Hermann

Marie T. Hermann's profile on Ceramics Now Magazine - View her works

“Looking around Marie Torbensdatter Hermann’s most recent exhibition of work, we may well have a similar feeling: that we are in the presence of pots that don’t quite need us. They are just fine on their own, thank you. Poised atop their handmade clay shelves, microcosms like the implacably calm still life paintings of Morandi, or set out in a neat ring on the gallery floor, these ceramic sculptures have a quiet assurance, an ease that belies the difficulty of their own making.

You almost have to remind yourself that it’s by no means easy to create this sense of completeness. The usual way of doing it is to make objects that are resolutely alien to everyday experience: the abstract geometries of De Stijl, the weird and hermetic object-poems of the Surrealists, the industrial quality of Minimalist sculpture, or the unearthly light and space created by artist James Turrell. While Hermann’s work is influenced by all of these art historical references, she appeals to something more humble and humane than any of them.

While her commitment to achieving a unified aesthetic impression is total, it seems to me that her greatest interest as an artist comes at the level of the detail. Yes, she knows she must (according to some modernist logic) ‘earn’ the right to create an interesting shape, like a sharp break in the profile of a vase, or a gentle curve in the rim of a plate. For her, these subtle touches have to make sense within an overriding context. There is nothing whimsical about them. But all the same, Hermann infuses these little maneuvers with a great deal of enjoyment – just as the slight sway of a violin or the mournful swell of an oboe might convey the emotion that a composer feels for his own symphony. Hermann’s pots may inhabit worlds of their own, and to that extent they stand proudly and resolutely apart. But through the deft and playful touches that are everywhere in this exhibition, we are let into something very human indeed: something not too far from bliss.” Glenn Adamson, Head of Graduate Studies at the Victoria and Albert Museum, London, about Marie T. Hermann’s work.

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Overthrown: Clay Without Limits, on view until September 18

The Overthrown: Clay Without Limits exhibition at the Denver Art Museum is on view until September 18, 2011.

"The scale of the space has pushed all the artists to think big, both physically and conceptually. The exhibition, technically demonstrates the inventive use of such an ancient material, while raising contemporary issues. The works in the exhibition challenge traditional notions of “objectness”, providing a depth of content, and creating a diverse dialogue." Katie Caron

Location: Anschutz Gallery, Level Two, Hamilton Building / Denver Art Museum

→ View images from the exhibition (in High Quality) - /Overthrown
→ Read interviews we’ve made with some of the exhibiting artists -  /Overthrown_Interviews

Interview with Gwen F. Chanzit - The curator of the exhibition.
Interview with Katie Caron and Martha Russo
Interview with John Roloff
Interview with Clare Twomey
Interview with Paul Sacaridiz
Interview with Linda Sormin
Interview with Del Harrow
Interview with Mia Mulvey
Interview with Benjamin DeMott

* The Overthrown: Clay Without Limits exhibition will have an extended feature in the first printed issue of Ceramics Now Magazine (November 2011).

Ceramics Now Magazine Newsletter - Special feature: Overthrown

Special feature for the Overthrown: Clay Without Limits exhibition, July 2011 - http://eepurl.com/eTpMo

The feature includes interviews with some of the exhibiting artists plus images from the exhibition. The Overthrown: Clay Without Limits exhibition is on view June 11 through September 18, 2011 and is part of Marvelous Mud: Clay Around the World, which includes eight exhibitions, live artist demonstrations, and hands-on programming. For details on individual exhibitions, see listings here.

Interview with Gwen F. Chanzit - The curator of the exhibition.
Interview with Katie Caron and Martha Russo
Interview with John Roloff
Interview with Clare Twomey
Interview with Paul Sacaridiz
Interview with Linda Sormin
Interview with Del Harrow
Interview with Mia Mulvey
Interview with Benjamin DeMott
Interview with Marie T. Hermann (will be published at the end of July)

/Overthrown - Images from the exhibition (in High Quality).
/Overthrown_Interviews - Interviews with 10 of the exhibiting artists.
/tagged/nameofthe_artist (ex: /Clare_Twomey) - Images with the works of the artist you’re looking for.

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Overthrown: Martha Russo and Katie Caron, Apoptosis (detail), 2010–11.  Porcelain, paper clay, glaze materials, colored pigments, assorted   tools, steel and hardware, silicone, LED Lights, compact fluorescents,   electrical cables, wires and conductors, utility poles, abaca paper,   beeswax. #2

Overthrown: Martha Russo and Katie Caron, Apoptosis (detail), 2010–11. Porcelain, paper clay, glaze materials, colored pigments, assorted tools, steel and hardware, silicone, LED Lights, compact fluorescents, electrical cables, wires and conductors, utility poles, abaca paper, beeswax. #2