Much gratitude to Jason Jacques Gallery for allowing us to publish glamorous digital versions of two beautiful Gareth Mason catalogs in our library. Today Other Forces (2011) and More is More (2014) are both available in cfile.library. If you are already a member, view the catalogs, or begin your 14-day free trial. And don’t forget to submit your catalog or book to cfile.library!
Other Forces: Gareth Mason
Mason, Gareth; Deason, Emily; Jacques, Jason
New York: Jason Jacques Gallery Press, 2011
More is More: Gareth Mason
Mason, Gareth; Jacobs, Richard; Jacques, Jason
New York: Jason Jacques Gallery Press, 2014
For potter/sculptor Gareth Mason, creation is a spiritual act. Mason allows everything to fall to the wind when he is making, meaning that he relies on his technical mastery, creative intuition, and obvious affection for the material in the studio. In his catalog Other Forces from Jason Jacques Gallery, Mason explains, “…mere technique is a straight-jacket, so I indulge in haptic mischief. Clay is a wonton recipient of bodily contact; every puncture, caress, fold and nub has its own expressive note.” Did I also mention that he is a poet?
In his catalog More is More (2014), Mason utilized his affinity for the written word, declaring, “Eat your heart out, wabi-sabi.” The poem continues throughout the catalog as a testament to the details and visceralities of his creative practice.
“Clear, gelatinous fluids ooze and drip from undulating lips;
glazes blush; forms overlap and flow into one another
vitrified softness endures;
palms, elbows, arms, chest, hip bones all pinch
and stroke and dent and smear, squeeze,
expand and intrude and coax and pierce….
Indeed, wabi-sabi! The artist is fond of failure, or mishap, rather. Like any good artist, he learns from his errors, but unlike the others Mason tactically, measuredly implements pieces of them. And this does not come as shock. His work feels like a series of natural growths, one on top of another; antique vases recovered from shipwreck at the bottom of the sea; sometimes caked in barnacles, sometimes partially melted. It goes without saying, they do not teach you to emulate igneous rock melting on the surface of your pots in school. Gareth has won over this natural-feeling yet alien effect via trial and error.
In Other Forces, essayist Emily Deason ponders Mason’s affinity for paralleling natural processes on his vessels by imagining Mason…
“in a seemingly God-like position, [though] a different, more reciprocal relationship exists as well. In a sense, these pieces evoke the linearity of human mortality in the face of human cyclicality. The artist’s goal is to push the material to its limits. This is done through the use of multiple materials and firings. At some point, however, the clay will say ‘no’ or ‘enough’ by breaking. however greatly he manipulates the elements of material, time, energy, stress, the artist’s success or failure is always beholden to the laws of nature. “
Don’t miss the opportunity to compare these two high-definition Gareth Mason catalogs. Today Other Forces (2011) and More is More (2014) are both available in cfile.library. If you are already a member, view the catalogs, or begin your 14-day free trial. And don’t forget to submit your catalog or book to cfile.library!