Aniela Ovadiuc - Romanian ceramic artist, November 2012

ROMANIAN CONTEMPORARY CERAMICS, November 2012: Aniela Ovadiuc

Aniela Ovadiuc Romanian contemporary ceramics featured on Ceramics Now Magazine

Interview by Vasi Hîrdo for Ceramics Now Magazine - Issue Two
Translation by Andra Baban

How did you discover the passion for ceramics?

By accident! When I was in high school I studied painting and I believed that nothing could rise to its value; that painting is part of my soul and the only way of expression for me as an artist. But this had changed when in university I have met ceramics, felt in loved and couldn’t separate since. This is mainly due to my professor, Ernest Budeş, the person which showed us all the ways of expressing through this medium, using clay, stoneware, earthenware or porcelain, each with its specific techniques.

Read More

Ryan Blackwell: Untitled (Red Rectangle), details, 2012, Table Top, Clay, Oil, Acrylic, Curtain Wire, 41 x 28 x 2 in.

Ryan Blackwell: Yellow, Table, Curtain Wire and Trowel, 2012, Table Top, Clay, Curtain Wire, Trowel, Oil, Resin, Wood Glue, 72 x 40 x 15 in.

Ryan Blackwell: Untitled (Red Rectangle), 2012, Table Top, Clay, Oil, Acrylic, Curtain Wire, 41 x 28 x 2 in.

Ryan Blackwell: Untitled (Red Rectangle), 2012, Table Top, Clay, Oil, Acrylic, Curtain Wire, 41 x 28 x 2 in.

Ryan Blackwell: Thirteen Days or Ten Miles per Gallon, 2010, Ceramic (Stoneware and Native), Paper Rope, Wood Glue, 156 x 60 (variable) x 12 in.

Ryan Blackwell: Untitled (White Shelf), 2012, Shelf, Clay, Oil, Acrylic, Resin, Wood Glue, Hardware, 43.25 x 10.25 x 2 in.

Month in Review: October 2012

Month in Review on Ceramics Now Magazine: October 2012, Courtesy Tanoue Shinya

Hello friends. Welcome to Month in Review, a summary of the last month of activity here at Ceramics Now.
Sign up for our email newsletter and follow us on Facebook, Twitter and Google Plus.

We offer limited sponsorship opportunities for those who want to connect with our global readership of professional artists and ceramic art enthusiasts.

Subscribe to Ceramics Now Magazine, the international bi-annual journal that promotes critical discussion about contemporary ceramics through interviews, artist projects and reviews.

This month’s featured interviews (view list):

Patricia Sannit - Artist of the month
Annie Woodford - Spotlight
Kwok-Pong Bobby Tso - Spotlight
Anti-Utopias / Sabin Borş - EXTRA!

This month’s special feature (ongoing - interviews):

Romanian Contemporary Ceramics
Eugenia Pop - In memoriam
Arina Ailincăi
Marta Jakobovits
Cristina Popescu Russu
Bogdan Teodorescu

This month’s featured exhibitions:

Ceramics Now Exhibition 3rd / Galateea Gallery, Bucharest
Francesca DiMattio / Pippy Houldsworth Gallery, London
The Open West 2012 Award Winners exhibition / England
Caroline Andrin & Francois Ruegg / Puls Ceramics, Brussels
Melissa Stern: The Talking Cure / Smart Clothes, New York
Anne Tophøj and Marianne Nielsen / Copenhagen Ceramics
Cynthia Lahti exhibition / Zentrum für Keramik, Berlin
Kim Simonsson / Galerie Favardin & de Verneuil, Paris
Mark Goudy & Liza Riddle / SMAart Gallery, San Francisco
When I Woke / Llantarnam Grange Arts Centre, Wales
Three exhibitions at The Clay Studio, Philadelphia, PA
German Op-Art Ceramics / University of Arizona Museum

This month’s featured connections:

Jannis Kounellis / Parasol unit foundation, London
Olaf Breuning: Human Nature / Pippy Houldsworth Gallery
Yin&Yang Parisienne Mix for Ceramics Now, October 2012
The reopening of Fabrica de Pensule 2012 / Cluj-Napoca
Carsten Nicolai - Unidisplay projection wall installation

Marie Torbensdatter Hermann exhibition / Galerie Nec, Paris

Marie Torbensdatter Hermann exhibition Galerie Nec, Paris

Marie Torbensdatter Hermann exhibition / Galerie Nec, Paris
October 26 - November 24, 2012

"The work reflects on some kind of strange family of domestic objects, they are bound together by a form of action, something undefinable but with a hint of a purpose. As if they are there for one very specific reason, each with a small specific individual function, but on their own they are un-significant, it is as a group how they become useful and self-sufficient. It is in the choice of grouping certain objects with each other and in the spacing of them, that they come into existence. I also see a big part of my practice as an arranger. Someone arranges objects and creates small details, small shots taken from a lager scenario. As if we have the time line in constant flux, I make the decision on where to cut out one image and create that as a memory of what ones was, before it moved on to become something else." Marie T. Hermann

“Looking around Marie T. 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. As is true of most potters, even those working in the manner of installation artists, daily use is constantly at issue for her – either as a haunting presence or a conspicuous absence. The inclusion of two plates, one sunk into its shelf and the other just emerging, gratifies our expectations on this score, even as the closing off of vases at the mouth refuses it.

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.

Read More

Francesca DiMattio: Bloemenhouder and Kandelaar / Pippy Houldsworth, London

Francesca DiMattio: Bloemenhouder and Kandelaar exhibition Pippy Houldsworth Gallery London

Francesca DiMattio: Bloemenhouder and Kandelaar / Pippy Houldsworth Gallery, London
October 10 - November 17, 2012

Pippy Houldsworth Gallery is delighted to present young New York artist Francesca DiMattio’s first solo exhibition in Europe from 10 October to 17 November 2012, and her first showing in London since her large scale canvases were seen in Saatchi Gallery’s Abstract America in 2009. Bloemenhouder and Kandelaar offers us the opportunity to see DiMattio’s vibrant and painterly sculptures standing on their own, showing the vitality and eccentricity of the large-scale ceramic pieces she has been developing over the past two years.

DiMattio’s paintings have often made reference to feminine craft techniques such as sewing, weaving or quilt making. In an attempt to shift the assumption that these crafts are most often delicate or small-scale domestic creations, she scales them up and uses a rougher, more masculine hand. Keeping with an interest in domestic craft, it is fitting that her sculptures are formed from ceramic. Using a material deeply ingrained in rules, craft and history, she turns it on its head by irreverently pulling from its history and pairing extravagant reference with crude slabs marked by fingers and punch marks.

In this exhibition, DiMattio investigates the history of porcelain to examine the ways in which visual iconography moves through culture. She looks at how porcelain’s visual history is one of copies, fakes and re-makes; how a revered technique such as the blue and white design found on a Ming Vase was copied by the English, Dutch and French, morphing and changing slightly through each iteration, and can now be found on a kitsch object in a gift shop. Like her paintings, the sculptures here juxtapose conflicting historical references, from 18th century English Wedgwood, French Rococo and Ming Dynasty to kitsch animal figurines. These are grafted objects, fusing disparate elements into a curious new whole. Each piece is made completely as one, rather than from found forms put together after the firing. The different passages affect one another, with glaze from one element interrupting, transforming and connecting multiple facets of the same sculpture.

DiMattio’s new work incorporates bases and handles of various forms, from gilded heaps of clay to delicately sculpted adorning flowers. Bases of piled up clay are reminiscent of Chris Ofili’s elephant dung, whilst a slumping torso-like coil pot seems on the verge of collapse. Debris made by sculpting animalia has been collected and put on the adjacent surface, creating a rough texture made of dust, chunks and trimmings, and elements in high gloss sit next to bright matte colour. DiMattio creates unstable and shifting objects that are a combination of various logics of taste. In Cuvette à Tombeau, one moment the china-painted landscape is beautiful and the bright rough-textured yellow feels broken, crude or flawed, and on a second look, the texture becomes vibrant and rich, whilst the landscape becomes something you might find in a thrift shop. The changeability of taste is heightened and examined through DiMattio’s uncanny pairings that ask the viewer to look closely at and interrogate these new abstract and de-hierarchised forms.

Read More

The Open West 2012 Award Winners exhibition / Gardens Gallery, Cheltenham, UK

The Open West 2012 Award Winners exhibition Cheltenham

The Open West 2012 Award Winners exhibition / Gardens Gallery, Cheltenham, UK
November 15-20, 2012

Private view: Thursday, November 15, 6 pm.

Artists: James P. Graham, Haruka Miyamoto, Koji Shiraya.

Following the open west’s acclaimed exhibition at Gloucester Cathedral earlier this year, curators Lyn Cluer Coleman and Sarah Goodwin are now presenting an exhibition of the three award winners, James P Graham (University of Gloucestershire Award) Haruka Miyamoto (Ecotricity Award) and Koji Shiraya (Curators Award).
This year’s award winning artists are connected by their concerns for the environment, showing acute awareness of the origins of the materials they use, from base metals to volcanic rock, leather, waste rubber and plastic, porcelain and feldspar.

James P Graham lives and works in Italy and London and exhibits internationally. Originally trained in film and photography, James’ recent sculptural work is informed by landscape and nature. His new sculpture, Golden Cage, coming to Cheltenham directly from the Chelsea Physic Garden, uses volcanic rocks from the active crater on Stromboli, which have been wound and suspended with gold thread. The work “symbolises man’s attempts to imprison and control nature,” (CNN, Eco Solutions, 20.7.12).

Haruka Miyamoto lives and works in London. Her training is in textiles (recently graduated from Chelsea College of Art & Design) and she works as a fashion, shoe and product designer as well as an artist. “The idea of my work is based on lifecycles in nature. I rescue materials from the bin and give them a second life, so they don’t end up in landfill. The impact that humans have on nature can be devastating. The dodo, which became extinct due to human activities, is a symbol of extinction.” Haruka showed in British-ish, the best of the UAL design graduates at the V&A for London Design Festival, and auctioned her work ‘Extraordinary Rubbish’ in the Faberge Egg Hunt 2011.

Koji Shiraya who works in London and is soon to return to Japan, is an artist who completed his MA in Ceramics and Glass in 2010 at the Royal College of Art. His work After the Dream shown in the darkened crypt at Gloucester Cathedral captured an intriguing ambiguity, using porcelain spheres as metaphors for the mind, and its Gardens Gallery setting will stimulate a new language. In his sculpture Trinary 2011 all of the samples in the jars are filled with some of the main components of the earth’s crust. Koji has shown work at Einfall: Beyond Spontaneity at the Freud Museum and at Designers & Makers at Somerset House.

Applications for the open west 2013 will be received from December. See theopenwest.org.uk for full details.

Read More

Caroline Andrin and Francois Ruegg / Puls Ceramics, Brussels

Caroline Andrin and Francois Ruegg / Puls Ceramics, Brussels
October 13 - November 17, 2012

Caroline Andrin exhibition Puls Ceramics, Brussels

Caroline Andrin
Swiss ceramist Caroline Andrin maintains her studio in Brussels as well as holding the Ceramics Department chair at La Cambre. Widely traveled and exhibited, this is her second Puls exhibition. Andrin has entitled this series of work Skin Game.

Much of Andrin’s art has been inspired by the examination of the intimate relationship that we have with the objects in our everyday environment, objects that we wear or use. Throughout her career, Andrin’s work has developed from one object to the next, sometimes by taking into consideration the function of the original object and sometimes by a larger context. She has been inspired by the principle that every form hides another form within it and that through a process of her own using clay, both the inside and the outside of an object can be made visible.

The title of this series is particularly apt. It asks many questions. Skin: what is it, when and where do we encounter it, and what deeper consequences does it hold for us as individuals and our values. We seldom pause to remember that the skin of a mammal—and specifically humans—is the largest organ in the body. As for game, is it the mere entertainment of stalking and bringing back a trophy to hang on a wall or the hides that kept our prehistoric ancestors alive through the Ice Ages?

The series consists of an ensemble of Trophies and Accessories. Game here of course assumes its double meaning, referring to play as well as hunting.

Andrin pits our visual perception against our sense of touch. She has captured the visual qualities of skin and then assaults the innate coordination of our sense with entirely the wrong texture. The work certainly has the look but not feel. She is challenging the very essence of the materiality we expect.

Each Trophy originates from a pair of leather gloves. The gloves are turned inside out, cut up and sewn back together in order to make a mold into which clay is poured. This process involves the casting of clay slip. Traditionally clay is cast in plaster molds. Since 1996 however, she has used material for molds that leave a trace on the final object. This is a verification of the idea that one form contains another.

The manipulation of the original object (the leather glove) creates an imaginary bestiary which speaks of the skin. Andrin examines our emotional relationship with objects and in this case, all that the objects represent.

Francois Ruegg exhibition Puls Ceramics, Brussels

Francois Ruegg
Francois Ruegg is an award winning Swiss ceramist exhibited at Puls for the first time. Ruegg intentionally uses allegory to color the figurative presence of his objects and their complex allusions. He plays with our innermost expectations, our stereotypes, and sends us on strange trains of thought. Ruegg deliberately leads us astray as he challenges our internalized landmarks and creates confusion in our perceptions. This is work that provokes, destabilizes, and opens up only enough to give up a few clues to understanding.

Read More