Jeremy Hatch’s exhibition, Matter of Time (affection affliction) at the Jane Hartsook Gallery (New York, April10 – May 8, 2015) is his New York solo debut. Hatch, a Montana-based artist, has done the unimaginable – cast a chain link fence. In this large-scale installation Hatch has bisected the gallery space with a fence weighted down with locks. It is a curiously pristine rendering of a raw industrial or low-rent urban environment, all the way to a pair of porcelain sneakers hanging from a cable (the power lines).
As the artist explains, he has sought to balance the virtuosic material achievement with a performance, and participation element:
“Matter of Time’ (affection affliction) builds upon my use of the physical and psychological properties of porcelain as a means to explore themes of memory, relationships, nostalgia and failure. The installation consists of a cast porcelain chain-link fence running the length of the gallery and relies on viewer participation in order to complete the work. From a library of plaster molds, gallery visitors are invited to cast a lock, inscribe it, and attach it to the ceramic chain-link panels. At the conclusion of the exhibition, the fence and amassed locks will be fired, fusing the objects together, serving as a permanent record of the event.
“Over the past decade the ritual of attaching ‘love locks’ to public bridges, fences, gates and other urban structures has become an international phenomenon. My interest lies in the inherent contradictions contained within this seemingly innocuous romantic gesture. The custom can also be seen as a form of destructive vandalism. Just as sections of historic bridges are collapsing under the weight of accumulated locks, my porcelain replica risks a similar fate. Rather than struggling to maintain a sense of security, it embraces the potential for failure and the realization that vulnerability is fundamental.”
Jeremy Hatch is currently Assistant Professor of Ceramics at Montana State University and founder of Ricochet Studio, a design lab that explores the intersections of art/craft/design by collaborating with artists from various disciplines. Hatch’s studio practice employs a variety of techniques and concepts linked to ceramics, from vessel- based sculpture to large-scale porcelain installations, digital and architectural applications. He has attended a number of international residencies including the Takumi Studio in Japan, the European Ceramic Work Center in the Netherlands, and Kohler’s Arts/Industry program in Wisconsin. Since 2003 he has led numerous courses and workshops that focus on industrial processes for ceramics: design and prototype production, mold making, and slip casting.
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