© Arlene Shechet. Courtesy of the artist.
Installation view Courtesy of the RISD Museum, Providence, RI.
David Hicks: Nucleus / Cross MacKenzie Gallery, Washington DC
January 10 - February 28, 2014
Cross MacKenzie Gallery is pleased to present “Nucleus” an exhibition of new ceramic sculpture by the prolific and compelling California based artist, David Hicks. This is his third solo show at our gallery.
“I am still digging in the dirt to understand my attraction to the agricultural,” the artist says of this new body of work. Though Hicks continues in these botanic and organic themes, his compositions have opened up and become less dense – no longer hanging down with the force of gravity from vertical wires. The new work is metaphorically blossoming. His array of gourd-like shapes of various textures, hues and dimensions are now suspended from a metal armature fixed to the wall, projecting outward like sconces, flower-like, hovering in space.
In her 2013 review of Hicks’ 2011 exhibition, “Farewell” at our gallery for Ceramic Art and Perception, Janet Koplos described Hicks’ sculpture; “the works are wonderfully sensuous abstractions (as all pottery can be) and are especially appealing for both color and texture”.
Every element is unique and unfamiliar, inhabiting a place in one’s imagination between associations: at once a cantaloupe or pear, then a beached bouy, an insect pod, a bird’s nest or an exotic dirt encrusted seed. Koplos describes the density of Hicks’ previous work; “But the numbers, the depth of accumulation and the softly worn surfaces hint that they have been retired and frugally held in reserve. It is a library of objects”. Though the artist still draws from that library, the new presentation is more precious, now demanding examination and appreciation for the individual elements rather than focusing the viewer’s attention on the clustered mass. The ceramic forms are one-by-one lovingly harnessed into fitted brackets, more akin to diamond settings now than the sinkers on fishing lines of the past. Even with the artist’s fresh approach and careful selection, his paring down on the amount of objects in the sculptures, Hicks is far from being a minimalist. His wall pieces continue the artist’s themes of nature’s abundance and excess, the forces of bearing fruit and multiplying.
The sense of planting seeds is even more obvious in the two pedestal pieces in the show that sit tree-like with a central weighted stalk, branching out with the ceramic forms perched on and suspended from the metal limbs. We are tempted with the tactile rawness, to pick the heavy fruit before it drops.
David Hicks received his B.F.A. from California State University, Long Beach, CA. and his M.F.A. from the New York State College of Ceramics at Alfred University. His work is in several prominent collections including the World Ceramic Museum, Icheon, Korea, the American Museum of Ceramic Art–AMOCO, Pomona CA, the American Embassy in Figi through the State Department’s, Art in Embassies program and the Arizona State University Art Museum in Tempe, AZ. He lives and works in Visalia CA. with his wife and new baby daughter.
Gareth Mason: More is more / Jason Jacques Gallery, New York
January 22 - February 22, 2014
Opening: Thursday, January 22, from 6-9 pm.
We are very excited to invite you to our newest exhibition with our first contemporary master ceramicist Gareth Mason. Following a show at the American Museum of Ceramic Art and an exhibition at the Korea Cultural Center in London. Gareth will be having his second solo exhibition at Jason Jacques Gallery. We are Publishing a 200 page catalog of Gareth’s work and the first publication of a series of letters between Gareth Mason and Ceramics collector Richard Jacobs which is a discourse of the nature of art and ceramics collecting. We are planning a series of lectures between Gareth Mason and his favorite Collector Richard Jacobs more information in the new year.
Gareth Mason new sculptural vessels are inspired by humanity’s connection to fire “Fire is humanity’s muse. Since the earliest humans pondered the nature of the sun, fire has captivated us with its mysterious force. Hominid fire — progenitor of dreams — spur to our noblest and most terrifying achievements, key to our aspirations and inextricable from the survival of our race, it burns literally and metaphorically in a place distinct from all other stimuli and matter. No wonder then that fire holds such creative potency for the human brain; as we gaze into its depths we ever behold a power of poetic and epic proportions. Of all the arts; silicate, ferric, kinetic, dramatic, sonic, plastic; of whatever place in the assumed hierarchy of creative genres, ceramics offers a unique spotlight on this most potent element. Through ceramics, it is possible to ‘fire’ the imagination and the spirit because ceramic metamorphosis is redolent of human experience. This belief underpins all my ceramic work. The igneous fusion of materials is analogous to human emotion. This is fertile ground for creative exploration and discovery.
Betül Demir Karakaya & Gökçe Özer: 1+1 / Terakki Foundation Art Gallery, Istanbul
January 9 - February 8, 2014
"Suddenly a voice is heard from 1+1…
One is quiet, whereas two is loud. 1+1 represents something more than a simple mathematical equation and the solution to this equation “2” is more than a number. It is an option against singularity.
The ceramic work of Betül Demir Karakaya and Gökçe Özer show us how different ones can add up to “2”. Özer’s ceramic sculptures portraying small heads on twirling bodies with hearts that have turned into black buttons carry the signs of a quiet but threatening power, while sculptures with open mouths, made using the same technique, create a place to hide from this threat. Whereas Demir’s ceramic bells give the signals of giving up an artist’s competence. With the game,she has extended an invitation to the audience by presenting a way to speak with them. Soil, that has been the common heritage of human kind, accumulates with a voice from two different languages in two female artists’ hands.
Ceramic works of Özer and Demir that have chosen two’s dynamism, instead of the competence of one -that isolates, makes blind and fattens- and two’s dialogue, instead of one’s monologue, will meet its audience at Terakki Art.” Words by Hazal Aksoy
Betül Demir Karakaya was born in 1978 in Izmir-Turkey, and started art education at Stragonov Moscow State University of Industrial and Applied Arts in 1998. Graduated from Hacettepe University Fine Arts Faculty Ceramics Department in 2002. In 2010 she has concluded her MFA at Anadolu University Institute of Fine Arts with the theme “Ceramic Bells Throughout History”. She is writing her PhD thesis at the same institute. She has many art pieces at private and public collections, including MIC Faenza International Ceramic Museum. She works at Karatekin University Fine Arts Faculty Ceramics Department as a lecturer.
Gökçe Özer was born in 1984 in Afyon. In 2002, she graduated from Ankara Anatolian High School of Fine Arts, Department of Painting, and in 2010 she graduated from Anadolu University Faculty of Fine Arts Ceramics Department. She studied as an exchange student between 2009-2010 at Universitat zu Köln. Presently she is working as a research assistant at Anadolu University Faculty of Fine Arts ceramic department and studied MA at the Institute of Fine Arts on ‘Influence of Wabi-sabi Aesthetic on Japanese Ceramic Art’. Currently she is a PhD candidate at Anadolu University Institute of Fine Arts.
Jos Devriendt: Day & Night / Pierre Marie Giraud, Bruxelles
January 17 - February 1, 2014
"Since 20 years I have been working on the archetype of the mushroom. It has been a search for a form that could be a sculpture with two different lives. A mushroom during daytime with an obvious and colourful expression capturing the light, and at night an abstract form giving light.
As a sculptor I want to reshape the form from day to night, solely with light: the daylight, which shines upon the sculpture and the artificial light, which comes from within and erases the material form. After researching the form, I experimented with different colours as a means to alter the meaning of the form. Like abstract painters use colours to give a meaning to their work, I do in a three dimensional way.
Artists have been expressing feelings through the sea, nudes or geometric forms.
Why not use mushrooms?
They have a lot of meaning in life.
Basically you can eat them and may be poisoned.
There is the hallucinating effect of some of the exotic species.
The sexual connotation of the mushroom is in many cultures an important element of mythology.
In essence, mushrooms bring me to the big themes of art: life, love and death, and last but not least to humour.”
Graciela Olio Ceramics: Proyecto Sur, Serie Home (Project South, Home Series), 2011, Porcelain sheet (Keraflex) print with laser decal on raw sheet before handbuilding, all 30x20x0,8 cm.
Graciela Olio: Proyecto Sur, Serie Home (Project South, Home Series), 2011, Porcelain sheet (Keraflex) print with photoceramic (gum bichromate process), Printing directly on raw sheet before handbuilding, both 15x10x12 cm.
Red Lodge Clay Center Long Term Residency / Red Lodge, Montana, USA
Application Deadline: February 1st, 2014
The Long-Term Residency (September 1 - July 31) is ideal for committed individuals in transition from post baccalaureate studies to graduate school, as well as those pursuing the development of professional artistic careers. Self-directed ceramic artists searching for the time, space and resources needed to explore new ideas and create new work will enjoy the rural mountainous setting. Accepted residents will be provided with studio space, housing, utilities, and a monthly stipend in exchange for twenty hours of work per week at the Clay Center. Responsibilities will include assisting in the retail operation of the gallery, teaching community clay classes, as well as cleaning and maintenance of the studio and gallery. Residents will be responsible for personal living expenses, as well as all material and firing expenses.
Application Fee: $40
The Red Lodge Clay Center welcomes applications from ceramic artists who will thrive working as a team, in a community minded atmosphere. The ceramics studio is located approximately six miles north of Red Lodge, 463 Two Mile Bridge Road. A form of transportation is necessary for the duration of the residency. Resident artists have 24-hour access to the ceramics studio. For more detailed information on material needs and studio equipment please contact the Red Lodge Clay Center.
Alexis Rago: Chaos Contained / Crafts Study Centre, Farnham, UK
January 7 - March 1, 2014
The National Centre for Craft & Design confirms that Alexis Rago: Chaos Contained will begin its life as a touring show in Farnham. Originally curated by Laura Mabbutt for the NCCD, the exhibition opens at the Crafts Study Centre on 7 January 2014 continuing until 1 March. Touring Manager, Liz Cooper says “During its 70 day run at NCCD, over 4,600 people of all ages viewed Chaos Contained, making it one of the most successful exhibitions we have held in our Roof Gallery. We hope to repeat that success in Farnham.”
Alexis Rago worked as a biologist and his artwork is inspired by the Cambrian explosion, when diverse life forms rapidly evolved. He hand crafts his sculptures, allowing them to take shape while he works, and incorporating the imperfections characteristic of work created by the human hand. For Chaos Contained, Rago created brand new, technically challenging, large scale ceramic works,with integrated media, such as digital sound and projected imagery. Avideo of Rago describing the work as he createdit explains his thoughts, creative processes and techniques.
The exhibition has received critical acclaim, with the New Scientist describing it as “Beautiful Biology, pure fantasy, a collection of intricate, totem-like clay sculptures that look as if they are made from natural organisms”. Elements from the exhibition formed a key part of the Frequency Digital Festival, which took place in Lincoln in October 2013.
Public praise for Chaos Contained, captured in the gallery comment book, includes “serene, elegant, fascinating and wonderful”, “Beautiful, life-affirming – a delight”, and “Superb! Biologist myself – love the forms”. It has inspired art students to take up clay work and children to complete wonderment: “antastic, my little girl was mesmerised and spent time considering how they [the forms] stand up, she is only seven”.
The National Centre for Craft & Design is a unique and ambitious gallery that seeks to exhibit the most innovative, challenging and accomplished artists practicing within the craft and design arena today. Under one roof, the NCCD has five galleries dedicated to the exhibition, celebration and promotion of national and international craft and design. The NCCD is committed to creating exhibitions that can be seen by as many people as possible. Through its touring programme, the NCCD works with some of the UK’s leading galleries and museums.
Graciela Olio: Proyecto Sur, Serie Home (Project South, Home Series), 2011, Sheet porcelain (Keraflex) print with laser decal on gold and platinum lustres. 40x20x20 cm.
Graciela Olio: Proyecto Sur, Serie Home (Project South, Home Series), 2010, Porcelain sheet (Keraflex) print with photoceramic (gum bichromate process), Printing directly on raw sheet before handbuilding, 10x10x12 cm. Photo by Hernán Cédola.