Carole Epp: Sometimes she wanted to tune it out as much as anyone else detail #2
Blaine’s work has been exhibited nationally in several solo and group gallery exhibitions exhibitions, like the “Strictly Functional National” in Lancaster Pennsylvania, NC State Craft Center’s “From These Hands” in Raleigh, NC. His work can be seen in publications such as Ceramics Monthly and Lark Books’ 500 Bowls and Ceramics for Beginners: Surfaces, Glazes & Firing. Along with private and corporate collections, his work is included in the permanent collection of the Mint Museum, Charlotte, NC.
Blaine Avery has been a studio potter since 1991. He took a position apprenticing with Sid Oakley at Cedar Creek Gallery in Creedmoor, NC. After a year under Sid’s direction, Blaine stayed on at Cedar Creek, renting studio space as a resident artist, and selling his work through the gallery, along with other galleries throughout the southeast.
In 2002, Blaine moved to Seagrove, NC to open his own retail gallery and studio, Avery Pottery & Tileworks. Today, Blaine sells his work primarily through his gallery, through select craft galleries and fine craft shows.
“Inspired by an amalgamation of ancient cultures, the gestural surface decorations on my work are applied with porcelain slip and under glazes at the green stage of the process. Layering the slip designs underneath the glaze creates a greater sense of depth that accentuates the contours of the forms. Pattern, rhythm, imagery and color are all used to complete the form, which is grounded in the bold and refined characteristics of traditional southern pottery.” Blaine Avery
“In my work, a tangible place exists where the fields of art making, weapons manufacturing and scientific research converge. This latest work is composed of these subjects existing in the same atmosphere, constantly crossing and colliding with one another as if part of the same charged electron cloud. This work as an endless equation of variables, values, formulae and solutions. Like the system and language of chemistry, these subjects are always around us and the characters, materials and scenarios of this equation and chain reaction are in constant motion.
In an effort to reflect on the early presence that these subjects have in our lives, this connectivity is expressed through a language specific to childhood and is punctuated with objects that reference my early education and play. The childish language in this work comments on two conclusions that stoke the fires of my work; the omnipresent nature of science in our daily lives and the similarity between objects used to discover and nurture and those used to destroy and capitalize.
I see this work as a mechanism to evaluate conflict as the direct result of two kinds of perennial human activities: misunderstanding – willful or otherwise – and the heroic yet flawed effort to understand through research and classification. The activities in my work show the nature of human relationships as seen through the lenses of our societies researchers and artists.” Ian Shelly
Ian Shelly: it’selementarymydearwatson installation detail
Ian Shelly: it’selementarymydearwatson installation
“My work in clay has been a succession/evolution of ideas over a thirty year period. I take certain elements that “work” in one series and often build the next series based on those elements. That could include the color of the clay body, the colors of the surface treatment, the texture of the surface, the form or the building technique.
I enjoy working with the idea in mind of smaller parts making up the whole. Tiles covering a wall. Vessels made with coil and brick-like pieces, or cut and torn clay parts that make a vessel look basket-like. The vessel form appeals to me on a level that I don’t understand. It is a sort of mystery. When I am out in the world and see such a form I am immediately drawn to it. As much as I am concerned with surface texture it is ultimately the simple form of a vessel that appeals to my eye.
I would like to think my work, and the act of making the work, connects me with past cultures who used the same materials to make vessels for ceremony or everyday use. I like the idea of being a part of the long history of people making things with their hands.” Jim Kraft
“I have always been a people watcher. In the first grade I did not play with the other kids. I stood back and watched. And I have been watching ever since. I watch what people do and imagine what they might like to do.
Life and society are such that we cannot always say and do what we like. However, in the imaginary world in which my ceramic people live, they can.
At the dawn of mankind primitive peoples fashioned clay objects. They sculpted about what they knew and wanted. Pregnant women and animals were the hot topics of the day. I think of my work much the same way. Though the topics may be different I feel a link to those old people sitting around playing with this beautifully plastic material.” Wesley Anderegg
“All my life I have struggled with writing, now my work is completely covered in text. This paradigm shift has allowed me to experiment in different art forms, and face fears through the medium of art. An interesting adventure in self-discovery! The text in my pieces acts on several levels. For instance, it has texture, pattern, mystery and a path to look inward to decipher a glimpse into my private thoughts.
I am fascinated by the rhythmic qualities created by color, texture, and patterns. Decoration and the act of decorating are essential because it celebrates and enhances form and speaks purely of aesthetics. I use pottery as a vehicle to explore decoration and other formal questions. It allows me to investigate form, space and image. My greatest satisfaction comes from thoroughly filling surfaces with color and finely detailed decoration in a spirit that I feel is playful and whimsical. My attempt is to make the environment an expressive participant and to address the importance of aesthetics in our daily lives.” Connie Norman
Connie Norman was born in Japan, and raised all over the world. She is a graduate of the New York State College of Ceramics at Alfred University and concentrated in ceramics and ceramics sculpture. She has also studied ceramics in Tokoname, Japan. Her work has been shown nationally and juried into many national shows, including Strictly Functional, Ceramics USA, and Origins in Clay, and a solo exhibition at NCECA, 2006. Connie is a Robert Rauschenberg Foundation Fellowship recipient winner for 2002. Also, in 2005 she received a Wyoming Art Council Visual Art Fellowship. Her work has been published in Ceramics Monthly. In December 2004 she was on the cover of Ceramics Monthly Magazine.
Arlene Shechet’s modeled surfaces demonstrate how clay mirrors the artist’s touch. Her objects bear the mark and memory of her hands. The sculpture’s bulges, hollows, spouts, and holes evoke bodily features, and as the artist notes, are “suggestive of the curving forms found in classical Indian sculpture.” By coating the clay with eccentric color combinations and metallic glazes—created with an experimental disregard for traditional firing temperatures—Shechet not only fractures the objects’ surfaces but also undermines any single association with nature. Seeming to expand and deflate like a breath, Shechet’s dynamic works continually transform, as they reappear anew moment by moment.
Born in New York City, Arlene Shechet received her BA from New York University and her MFA from Rhode Island School of Design. Her work has been exhibited at numerous venues, including the Museum of Contemporary Art Denver (2009), the Walker Art Center (2009), the Institute of Contemporary Art, Philadelphia (2008), the Scottsdale Museum of Contemporary Art (2008), the Rubin Museum of Art, New York (2007), Real Art Ways, Hartford (2005), and Henry Art Gallery, Seattle (2003). She has created on-site installations at the United States Embassy, Beijing (2008), Byrdcliffe Arts Colony, Woodstock (2007), the Cathedral of St. John the Divine, New York (2001), and elsewhere.
Young Mi Kim was born and raised in South Korea. she and her family immigrated to New York City in 1974. She studied painting, graduating from Cooper Union. Chance adventure led her to discover clay fifteen years ago and she is still inspired to explore its depths and possibilities.
Kim began her career as a painter and is a graduate of Cooper Union. She has been working in clay for over fifteen years, having discovered the medium best expresses her artistic vision. Her range of work includes tall open vessels, deep bowls and altered sculptural forms. Kim uses the two dimensional line to give her shapes visual form and strength, while her organic, hand-coiling technique and gently worked surfaces give her forms life. The space contained in her vessels balances deftly with their vegetative and marine inspired radiating, decorative patterns.
Jason Walker’s ceramic sculptures offer narrative in both two- and three-dimensional forms. Walker’s painted porcelain tells part of a story depicted also by the object and the actions it may be committing. While the relationship between nature and technology are common themes touched about by Walker, some more recent pieces seem more sociological. Ideologies aside, the sheer skill and technique involved is also worthy of note.
“The culture I live in does not emphasize our physical connection and dependence on nature. The current ideology is reliant upon technology, and it promotes disembodied activity such as television [and] computers… The gap between man-made and natural is ever increasing.
Light bulbs, plugs, power-lines and pipes that grow from the earth are common images found in my work, juxtaposed with birds, insects, and organic matter such as leaves and trees. Similar to the thinking of the Hudson River School of painting, I attempt to portray nature’s vastness and human-kind as a small proponent of it. Yet I draw the small things of nature large and the huge creations of man small. I want to show how we influence the landscape, or nature. My ideas stem from my own experiences bicycle touring, backpacking and the daily hikes I take with my dog.” Jason Walker
Shamai Gibsh: “fly Away”, 49x28x10cm. Stoneware, smoke firing.