Ceramics Now is an independent art platform and magazine specialized in contemporary ceramics.
James Hoff: I’m Already a Has-Been exhibition / VI, VII, Oslo August 31 — December 5, 2012
For his first exhibition at VI, VII, American artist, writer and editor James Hoff presents two groups of paintings based around language, and abstraction as a culture-bound illness.
One set of paintings tries to imagine a visual counterpart for syndromes that enter language through specific geographic contexts as the outcome of locally existing phenomena and paranoia—Nigerian ‘Brain Fag’ syndrome for example—formulating abstraction as a cultural malady that is linguistically spread.
A second set of works is based on drawings found at stationary stores in cities like Oslo and New York, casually and communally scribbled onto notepads when customers were testing their pens.
In these works, the scratch pad functions as a surrogate for abstraction illustrating the collective pathos of the community from which they were born. All of this, of course, goes back to Freud and can be traced through the Dadaist affinity with automatic writing and the very imperfect science of twentieth century gestalt theory which used mark-making as a way to determine cognitive skills, sanity and mental health.
In preparing this exhibition, the artist chose to include new works not previously addressed in this press release. The works were composed by means of flocking the areas left exposed after a first-pass tearing away at the shrink wrap around pre-fabricated canvases, freezing with small colored fibers set into wet paint, the exact moment the canvas is about to be freed to be painted on. In this sense each of these partially flocked works is a still life, soft to the touch, that documents the innate and every everyday activity of unwrapping a package. (via Contemporary Art Daily)
Images courtesy of VI, VII, Oslo. Photos by Jon Benjamin Tallerås.
Prize winning Polish-born artist Aneta Regel Deleu is a rapidly rising star on the European ceramic art horizon. She is an honors graduate of the Gdansk, Poland Fine Art Academy and London’s University of Westminster and Royal College of Art. This is her first exhibition at Puls Contemporary Ceramics Gallery.
"The main focus of my ceramic forms is the exploration of materials and their combinations. I am particularly interested combining the rough natural qualities of materials such as rock with malleable materials such as clay. The resulting juxtaposition of the natural and human-made creates a dramatic friction and tension. This reinforces the transformation and sense of movement that objects undergo during the passage from one state to another throughout the making process."
Aneta Regel’s work seeks no functional path other than that of the communicative and expository power of art itself. Like certain of her mid-20th century pioneering artistic antecedents, she utterly rejects the label of potter. Simply because her medium is clay, fire and occasionally glaze, that does not make it craft. The designation of ceramist or ceramic artist—or better yet, ceramic sculptor—is both more expansive and accurate.
The human figure is not her vehicle of expression. Rather it is the trees, rocks, fields, and river-beds first encountered in her native northern Poland and later in her travels. Her formal language is abstract, creating a sort of equivalent to the natural world rather than attempting to describe it. Hers is a landscape, or more precisely, aspects of a landscape that create images through which she seeks to convey her vision of a reality we may already have encountered or indeed might yet encounter.
Regel is a romantic seeking to capture the forms, energies and rhythms of the forests and natural phenomena that have surrounded her. She has repeatedly been confronted by native rock, split and ground into powder by the power of glacial ice.
Wim Borst became a professional ceramist at a rather advanced age. At the age of 31 he exhibited for the first time. As a self taught artist he took lessons in ceramics from Ru de Boer and Emmy van Deventer a.o.
His oeuvre and career are characterized by a great accuracy and a persistent mentality. His ceramics has its roots in the Dutch geometrical abstract tradition, although he uses the idiom in a non-academic, refreshing way. Within the boundaries of the self chosen restrictions of the geometric abstraction, he takes liberties with colors, materials and themes. His objects are (generally) made up of different parts.
Wim Borst is exhibiting regularly in the Netherlands and abroad. He is a member of the NVK (the Dutch Society of Ceramic artists) and of ‘de Vishal’, (a local society of artists in Haarlem, his native town). He is part of a group of Dutch ceramists, CeramiCVision.nl who regularly join to discuss their profession; they are looking for opportunities to attract the attention of the public for their works and they are organizing exhibitions as a group.
His work is in private collections and in museum collections in the Netherlands and abroad, such as Museum Boijmans Van Beuningen in Rotterdam, Boston Museum of Fine Arts in Boston USA, Frans Halsmuseum in Haarlem, Museum Keramion in Frechen Germany, ‘Magnelli Museum’, the Ceramics Museum of Vallauris, France, Museum Het Princessehof in Leeuwarden, and Stedelijk Museum Schiedam.
“I work with abstract sculptural form. I am interested in the idea of one continuous surface, with one connected edge or line running through the whole form. Clear, clean shapes; soft smooth curves in contrast to sharp edges; concave and convex surfaces; the discovery and strength of an inner/negative space - these are all form expressions that appeal to me and results in my continuous exploration and expression in many different variations.
My sculptures are either asymmetrical or with a repetition of form:
- Asymmetrical where I mainly work with the idea of continuous surface. The form has only one side and one edge connected throughout the shape. - Repetition of form with three symmetrical parts that are connected; three being both a strong number and a balanced repetition of form. The negative space - the shape of the space in between, is equally important.
My work is hand built in coiling technique. Stoneware is my chosen material for its qualities - I like to challenge the material and my own skills by building complicated shapes; fragile in the building, drying and firing process which upon firing attain the strength to be handled and positioned without support.
I often get an idea for a new form while working on another. I also find my inspiration in form I see in nature as well as architecture and design; clean curves, sparse decoration, simplicity. To emphasize the form I use a matt surface and monochrome colours.
I was born in Denmark but grew up in Sweden. I returned to Denmark to study at Design School Kolding in 2000, and moved to London in 2005 after graduating. I have since then predominately worked with sculptural forms.” Merete Rasmussen