Thanks to all who came to see my demonstration in the NCECA Process Room in Kansas City. I enjoyed having the opportunity to show an alternative way of making handles and I’m thrilled that the leatherhard mug I brought from Florida survived air travel to receive the handle.
I am excited to announce that I will be teaching in the University of Georgia Studies Abroad Program in Cortona, Italy this summer. The program was started in 1970 as a summer study abroad and grew into a year-round satellite campus of UGA. I spent a week in Cortona several years ago on vacation and I have been impatiently awaiting the chance to return. I was struck by the relaxed lifestyle, being surrounded by history, amazing food, and, of course, the coffee bars. Who wouldn’t want to work in this historic studio in a beautiful Tuscan hilltown?
The program is designed for full-time undergraduate and graduate credit. Students take 3-5 courses including studios in CERAMICS!!!! as well as art history and Italian language. Centered in Tuscany, students have the opportunity to see masterworks in Rome, Florence, Venice, Arezzo, Pisa, Orvieto and Sienna. Cortona is home to an impressive collection of Etruscan pottery and nearby Deruta is a center of majollica production.
These are images from Charlie Cummings Gallery. The show was on display in the gallery between April 4th and 16th. architecTONIC is my MFA Thesis show at the University of Florida. Photo credit for the studio shots goes to Charlie Cummings.
A short description of my project follows:
I seek harmony in my surroundings, moments of respite from the rush and concerns of daily life. I find a sense of calm hearing the emotion expressed in a song, seeing soft colors interacting in nature and art, and drinking coffee from a handmade cup. The synthesis of my research in post-modern architecture, abstract painting, and indie music culminates in my utilitarian pottery.
The functional parameters of the pot allow me to achieve two important goals in my work: offering individuals an interactive experience through use, and questioning the aesthetic conventions of the archetypal pot within the framework of function. A surprising rendition of a familiar pottery form strikes the onlooker with a feeling of discovery, enticing a closer investigation through sight, touch, and interaction.
I merge these influences into a visual language to express the sense of calm and balance that I seek in life. Grounded architecturally inspired forms communicate stability, and cantilevered components act as a counterpoint to the mass. Visual chords of color establish a comforting harmonized background. Architectural features punctuated with vivid color conduct the viewer’s eye through the piece and settle into a mellow mid-tempo beat.
The culmination of my research is a body of functional pottery. Geometric forms combined with painted color become utilitarian three dimensional color field paintings. Individual vessels and function-specific sets reference skyline and double as musical phrasing or a waveform of sound. The exhibition design is a hybrid of a home interior and gallery space using display furniture that references tables as well as the pedestal. The walls are engaged with painted elements and shelves holding sets of pottery.
Both architects and potters are fundamentally engaged in designing functional space. Architecture holds people; people hold pottery. Like the sentiment in a song, I instill calmness in my vessels to be experienced through use and contemplation within people’s hands and homes.