Chris Riccardo

Chris Riccardo's profile on Ceramics Now Magazine - View his works

Chris Riccardo received his BFA in sculpture from the College of Fine Arts at Boston University.

In 1995, Chris opened his own commercial bronze casting foundry, RDK Studios in West Palm Beach, FL. A few years later, he began teaching figurative sculpture at the Armory Art Center. Shortly after he decided to sell his foundry and concentrate on his work and teaching. In 2007, Chris was named the Director of the Sculpture Department and Foundry Manager. He set up a small foundry at the Armory and began teaching the fine art of bronze casting.

For a number of year his work dealt with the figure in bronze.  Recently, he has started to work less in bronze and more in clay. His figures are one of a kind, fired clay with underglazes. For years his color palette was that of the limited bronze patina finishes. Working in clay has opened up new doors to his work with the unlimited color palette available with glazes.
He is currently represented by the Mindy Solomon gallery in St. Petersburg, FL.

“They point and laugh, tease and ridicule all the while unaware of the consequences.
As important as play is to our development as adults, what effect does play have on those who cannot participate in the traditional sense of the word?
Consequences comments on the epidemic of childhood obesity in our country and how the disease affects our children’s ability to play, leading to low-self esteem, inability to interact and work with others and possible future psychological abnormalities.
It is these abnormalities that have been the focus of my recent work, starting with my series entitled: Mugz: American Heroes. The pieces in Mugz are taken from police blotter mug shots and the accused crimes are woven into their portraits. Consequences takes this idea one step further and explores the idea of how these people end up in front of the authority’s camera.” Chris Riccardo

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Virginie Besengez

Virginie Besengez's profile on Ceramics Now Magazine - View her works

“I am inspired by the urban landscapes around me, the architecture of the North and by the austere aesthetic of Flemish still-life. I like plain clay, monochrome compositions. I shape my pieces and accumulate them according to an imaginary plan, to create installations in search of the perfect balance.

I have a feeling for everyday objects, for the physical relationship we have with them (the closeness we have to them) for the way they wear out.

My work on pans enable me to confront the apparent solidity of the piece which hits the collective subconscious, with the fragility of clay.” Virginie Besengez

Virginie Besengez draws her inspiration from nature. She is interested in the movement, repetition in the landscapes that are constantly changing with the wind and the light. ‘Like a photographer I would like to capture a moment in time by creating forms and curves similar to those found in nature. The texture of the surfaces of my vessels achieved by polishing, grinding and also raku firing is very important to me.’

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Rafa Pérez

Rafa Pérez's profile on Ceramics Now Magazine - View his works

“My work is about surprising myself and the audience, using white porcelain and black earthenware clay, fired at high temperature. The black earthenware expands, thus creating a volcanic landscape. It is not just a natural landscape, because it is directed by me. I have created the cuttings from the beginning, but still the aspect of surprise is always present, because what happens in the kiln is unpredictable.” Rafael Pérez

The distinguishing characteristic of Perez`s work is its apparently matter-of fact use of ceramic materials and methods to dispel rather than reinforce the sense of ceramics as a discipline. Clay is undeniably the central, material component of his work, but it is utilized in such a way as to make problematic the distinction between ceramics and painting, sculpture or even performance. Perez orients his activity within the boundaries of physics and his transgression of the traditional.

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