Friday, September 26, 2008
Thursday, September 25, 2008
In the first semester of my junior year, we are focusing on the wheel as a method of production. After several weeks of these practices, our class began glazing many of the works we produced. I chose to present a collaborative work from myself and Matthew Jorgensen who works alongside me in the studio. We switched back and forth on the wheel in the work's preliminary stages, which in turn led to a piece that had characteristics of both mine and Matthew's efforts. After bisque-firing the larger, low-pitched bowl, I applied a flashing slip to the interior surface of the bottom. Following this, I then applied 1/4" tape to the interior of the bowl, while paying close attention to detail in order to achieve a strict, linear result. This idea of "striping," comes into play for a number of reasons but mainly for its ability to formally translate basic design principles while lending itself as a base for decal work that will later play a role in this particular work. -Launch Slideshow-
Monday, September 22, 2008
We are also working with layers of thin slabs stacked so that one can cut through the layers to create a design. This method is intended to model a prototype which would then be molded and duplicated using a plaster mold. I've made a few prototypes but have yet to refine it completely.
I'm pretty excited about some initial tests for developing texture by spraying slips. Even on a very flat surface, the particles have a tendency to flock into organic patterns, and even the finest scratch on the surface will effect that tendency. I don't know exactly where I'm going with this one either but it seems promising.
The style of my pieces presently have a very streamlined, and aerodynamic feel. They are demure, and graceful with their curves, and exude a demeanor of femininity. They are much like the person I am not. It's interesting how pots can be so like their maker, or not outwardly connected. That a person who considers them self very quirky, loud, and unladylike for the most part could make something one would call dainty. Perhaps some pots try to out their maker, and show a side that isn't always immediately seen. Or maybe they just show how anal retentive their creator is, and everyone really knows that part anyway.
I am trying to connect the interior and exterior with a visual relationship in my pieces - to give each pot an aspect that draws the eye into the very bottom of the vessel. Similarly I am incorporating hidden writing on some part of these pieces to give the user an intimate relationship with it. Much like a discarded grocery list on the back of a receipt, or a personal note on the front page of a book can make the mundane special. These words change the tone and meaning of each piece, and it's relationship with it's final owner.
Sunday, September 21, 2008
The tile showcased in the slideshow is inspired by Frank Lloyd Wright. His work was primarily around the turn of the century, and was a major component of the craftsman style. This piece emphasizes craftsmanship, and the woman reflects the ideals of her time. Women of propriety from that era were never seen outside the home without their white gloves, and elegant dress. I want to explore what makes a woman, and how they are perceived in their respective times. I personally have had a lot of inquiry into what the matter means, to myself and others around me, to be a woman.
As a woman you are born into a class. You have no choice in the matter - it is assigned at birth. Based upon physical characteristics, and totally disregarding psychological disposition of the individual. Society assigns you a profile of what is acceptable and not for that gender. If your propensity falls outside of that, you are considered abnormal by conservative douche bags. This subject is quite versatile, and I am constantly being drawn back to this theme since I can personally relate to it. Link to Slide show describing my process.
I have a little help from a "friend" his name is don juan de marco, and he's a flippin hottie!!!!
as of this summer my work has been based on the consistent realistic imagery of Peter Paul Ruben paintings, he is one of the great masters from the northern baroque 17th century enlightenment period. so far he has created multiple paintings on satyrs and Bacus, with this i've transfered the imagery into a three dimensional ceramic tile as well as manipulating the idea of painting on flat tile panels in the process of creating a mural at a large scale.
Monday, September 15, 2008
Last week while taking in the works at the Daum museum in Sedalia, Missouri, I was surprised to find that i had positive thoughts for a good little handful of pieces on display there. This is surprising to me because i often find that i like the interior spaces of galleries and museums more than the work within. Cheesy as it sounds, perhaps this is the reason i was drawn to the painting by Robert Stackhouse entitled, "Encountering Interior". This one was hanging in the gallery that was themed, "systems" or something involving that concept. It is a very warm composition of line work and architectural space. I think that what i am drawn to here is the neutral palette of very few colors, which manages to present a sense of visual depth and intuitive structure. There is no "real" space being represented here, but rather an imaginary place of quiet and implied safety. There is also a mysterious nature to the piece which makes one wonder what lies beyond the sideways arc of the path. i also enjoy how the image seems to melt or even put roots downward through the vertical dripping of washes at the bottom. in short, comfort and joy.
Recently on an excursion to first Friday, I had the unlucky misfortune to experience the wrath of a gallery owner. My offence was none other than the “Finger”. You may ask yourself what I was doing, “Sporting the Bird” or was this other socially fronded a pond, “mining finger”. No neither, this was the illustration finger: to point at an object to draw attention to a unique and interesting detail in the artist work. The artist was Rudy Autio and one of his dancing figures, but the work is of no difference to point.
We expect a certain amount of proprietary alarmed ness, with patrons coming into close contact with an artist work. Did I break the 18-inch? Rule? Yes, I would say I came within 6 to 10 inches. My point is this; many of us (artist) are very familiar with a process, and fill at liberty to come within working contact with another persons work. Do I have a license to do this? No, I’m an artist. Do I personally know this person? No, took my picture with him once.
We all want to have success in our chosen field, to have gallery representation, and be respected for our craft. Initially I was put out by this barking guard dog, but after thinking about the encounter. I realize I would want the same watchfulness and attention to detail for my ceramic children. Maybe next time I’ll think twice about my roaming finger.
Over the summer I saw a few good shows in the Houston area. One of particular interest was at the Houston Museum of Natural Sciences entitled - Leonardo da Vinci: Man, Inventor, Genius. There were over 60 working models of Leonardo's inventions that were handmade in Italy. Not of Leo's own hands of course, but modern Italian craftsmen.
One thing that I enjoyed learning was that not only did Leonardo invent many new contraptions for his day, but he greatly improved things that were already in existence as well. He made great leaps and bounds in the natural sciences, arts, agriculture, nautical sciences, aviation, and warfare. The greatest thing though about his attributes to warfare was his model of the first tank. The genius here is that he purposefully reversed some of the cogs so that the tank, if ever made, would be unable to move and function properly. Da Vinci predicted that if this were actually to be made, that the casualties would be devastating, and he didn't want to aid in the destruction of life, but in the development of the human intelligence.
Little known to many people, Da Vinci invented the first working robot, and car. These were somewhat made like clockwork objects in that springs needed to be wound to propell these objects. Also, everyone's favorite teenage mutant ninja turtle designed the first wiffle ball!
Sunday, September 14, 2008
The Kansas City Art institute ceramics department recently traveled to the Daum Museum of contemporary art in Sedalia, Missouri to view a variety of modern and contemporary works of art that date back to the mid-twentieth century. Of the many works on display, three large panels that read as paintings stood out to me. They were done by Bobby Silverman, an alumni of the Art Institute, who I was first introduced to last year when he came to lecture and give critiques to students. The Chinese manufactured tiles above were precisely crafted on top of being commercially glazed with rich hues that were daunting in real life and timeless in perspective. His work at the Daum explores ceramics as a vehicle for artistic as well as architectural design. Some aesthetic elements Silverman carried out in these works include their visual and physical presence in space which relied on scale, a warm-analogous color scheme, and a sense of minimalism similar to color-field painting that took place during the 1950's and on. More of his work can be seen by visiting alsio design.
The frenzy of First Friday can be enticing, at least in theory. On the first Friday of every month museums and galleries burn their lights a little later into the evening, and empty warehouses are converted from mosquito breeding grounds to lively venues, showcasing the latest in mediocre works by mediocre artists. I don’t mean this to be condescending, or to classify myself above it, merely to be honest. There are diamonds in this pile of earth, but they are increasingly rare. Where has refinement of craft gone, and was it ever important?
In search of craft I stumbled into the Toy and Miniature Museum on the campus of UMKC. Sure it cost six bucks but I thought it would be worth a shot. My first impulse upon walking through the doors was, “oh, it’s one of these places”. It is in many ways just one of those places. Odd collectables dating back at the most a couple hundred years, of various American and European origins, stuffed bears, dolls, doll houses, toy soldiers and marbles.
The diamonds in this pile are not visible from the front of the museum. You have to walk toward the back, where dimly lit hallways showcase tiny dioramas inset into the walls. Every minute detail is carved and manipulated from the real corresponding material in these tiny models. Sure the door is only three inches tall but it is one of a kind handcrafted piece of art, assembled from planks of wood following the diagram of a real door, and the hinges, doorknob, and lock all function with the aid of a tiny key.
Craft is not dead, it is hiding in the basements and garages of elderly men.
Saturday, September 13, 2008
My first priority that night was to stop by the school gallery to see the work of our very own (see Paul's post). But on the way I made it out to the Leedy-Voulkos Gallery, where the Renegades of Funk show pulled me in from every direction. It was like a party with a DJ and action happening in every corner. The first thing I saw was a little girl with a paintbrush going at it on a wall. Across the room, Hector Casanova (pictured), a former instructor for the Foundations year at KCAI, was actively painting over another painting. All were part of an exhibition featuring underground artists. Putting their work up in a gallery defied the "street art" philosophy of having their art be accessible to all and not limited to gallery space. However, the aesthetic, technique and the overall feeling of what was happening - that it was all in-the-moment and involving both the viewers and artists - gave me a taste of that street art edge.
Tuesday, September 9, 2008
First Friday was an assuring experience for my first exposure to the Arts in KC. It was overwhelmingly busy. April Hernandez, Korla Luckeroth, and Tera Polansky put up a great show titled Living, Longing, & Losing; Stories of the American Dream. The work was presented at the KCAI Crossroads gallery in downtown KC. Korlas' work utilizes hand-building techniques to to depict baron landscape. She uses gravity as a way to manipulate the flow of glaze to render sky and clouds. April Hernandez uses the potters wheel to make vessels inspired by the form language of "fine China". April emphasises decorative surfaces by using slip-trailing methods to create a feeling of elegance, delicacy and preciousness. Tera Polansky renders portraiture within the context of porcelain table-ware as a keepsake. Some work is illuminated in order to draw comparison between interior and exterior while others draw comparison through their arrangement and placement on the wall. Each object is one of a kind and manipulated by hand which further draws a dialog between the imagery used and the language of the the piece. While in the crossroad district I also went to the Sherry Leedy gallery and saw some great work. I went on a couple of rides, saw the statute of liberty and managed to put my foooooot in my mouth!
Monday, September 8, 2008
Anton's work utters tunefully. The subject of his work has a potent metaphorical context that can be simplified by simply understanding his purpose of random arrangement. Although his variation of objects become to copulate when the eye blurs and the objects become unified with whiteness. This is where he gains harmony with his subject matter, by creating a union of social bonds that are surreal, pure, and subjective. Promenading perspectives of genuine essences arranged uniquely, ridiculously, and strongly presented ceremonially. Inspiring other possibilities to the mind's imagination, either intriguing the desire to know or creating a personal dialect to it's voids. His work does not gives answers, but the evidence is often immaterial, irrelevant, and incompetent.
Hamada's style is simple, well crafted wares with the air of wabi-sabi in mind. He had mastered in his time a well recognizable technique of dripping his glaze decorations. Many, like this one, have a very calligraphic nature. On this particular piece, Hamada used a wax resist to paint the figures, and dipped the entire piece in a luscious, earthy glaze to contrast the bare clay body that makes up the design. The calligraphic elements are in an uneven sequence, and all touch the mid-line for anchorage. They are reminiscent of animals or human figures. The uneven edges of the linework embody the desired overall sense of wabi-sabi - the beauty in use and naturalness.
Part of the mingei folk pottery tradition is that the works are not directly signed by the artist, but that each artist has their own style distinct enough to set their works apart. Not signing the work directly makes the potter humble. However, all aspects of the pieces are considered, and each piece of pottery usually comes with a box or case that is sometimes signed by the artist.
Hamada was deemed a living national treasure of Japan in the 1950's. His works are understated, yet explicitely graceful, and have freedom of design.
Sunday, September 7, 2008
Anthony Pack work reminds me of childhood toys, playful, bright and simple. I am able to respect his resourcefulness, creative problem solving, allowing the recycled material to aid to the illustrated scene. Many of the subjects have a ridiculousness to them, that evokes laughter and smiles. As with most humor there is a timeliness to the subject, that might date his work. Though I feel his craft will set him apart, and give him a mark of distinction.
Hans Wegner was one of the top designers of the Danish modernist movement in the fifties and sixties. I find myself very attracted to chairs, especially those created by the northern gods of design (Scandanavians). Hans Wegner produced many beautiful, simple furniture designs which often used unstained wood and woven rush seats and yet had a look of clean, intentional modernism. I also enjoy the emphasis that was always placed on craftsmanship and have tried to absorb something of this attitude in my own creative thinking.
Christo and Jeanne CLaude are an Artist couple who live and work in Manhattan New York. Jeanne Claude more so is in charged of the office work while Christo focusses on the design of their next installment with drawings he create in his upstairs apartment. their work are mainly up for a few weeks at a time but the process of endorsement and permission for such large installations would take up to 20 years or more. Christo's work comes with the sense of architecture and design with the colors and fabrics used. so far they have compleated many works together; the next upcoming event will take place on the Arkansas river in southwest Colorado over the course of two weeks in the summer of 2012.
It may look like a ceramic tile piece but it's not. Maki Tamura designs beautiful ornamented works using wood and watercolors on paper. The time she puts into her craft (tediously cutting, glueing, and painting) makes it truly deceptive to those of us who deal with clay everyday. Although she comes from a japanese background, her style influences come from the rococo motifs of 18th and 19th century European arts.
Here is a link to her series "The Enlightenment" in the Lucas Schoormans Gallery back in 2006> http://www.lucasschoormans.com/index.php?mode=artists&object_id=28.
May 10th, 1904
The great big trees of California live up to their promise and name. An ancient open air cathedral, all quiet here in this forest of mostly pines and firs.
I have discovered, though not first hand, that bad luck knocks on the door of those who cut down big trees, or shoot in the direction of an owl.
The space allocated for a message seems to grow smaller and smaller with each postcard. Hope to sight the once thought extinct Ivory Billed Woodpecker. If I sit very still I think I will be in with a sporting chance.
Fir cones and Racoon tracks,
Saturday, September 6, 2008
Jason Tarbell uses an open source programing language called Processing to generate his images. They render using algorithmic probabilities which allows generation of a new image each time the program is run.
His compositions can be viewed in Java applets as they actively construct themselves.
Processing is a programming language that was designed at MIT specifically for artists and designers. The language is approachable for people with minimal or no experience with other programming languages. It allows complex 2-d and 3-d rendering, as well as audio processing and control of micro controllers. There are more examples and a great book available through the Processing website.