Welcome to our first NewsFile of 2019. NewsFile is our round-up of newsy tidbits and happenings from the world of contemporary ceramic art and contemporary ceramics. We launch the year and this edition a farewell to renowned prolific potter Warren MacKenzie.
Warren MacKenzie, February 16, 1924 – December 31, 2018
Minnesota potter Warren MacKenzie passed away December 31, 2018 at the age of 94. In his 65 years as a potter, Warren, who studied with Bernard Leach from 1949 to 1952, was one of most important figures in U.S. workshop pottery. Through his work, he enriched lives and inspired many young potters at the University of Minnesota.
Walker art republished an essay commemorating his 90th birthday.
Putting his career in the simplest of terms, MacKenzie just loves to make pots. His fascination with this form of independent creation began at the Art Institute of Chicago and continued in St. Ives, England. He and Alix MacKenzie, his first wife, spent two years there learning from renowned potter Bernard Leach. This defining experience and his subsequent partnership with Alix led to his artistic process of throwing between 50 and 200 pots a day.
For MacKenzie, each new work was imbued with a special message for its eventual user, the Star Tribune writes.
“It is only when the user feels the presence of the hand of the potter that communication truly exists,” he said in the 2013 documentary “Warren MacKenzie: An American Potter.”
“When we gave our collection to the Museum of Fine Arts-Houston, among the pots I missed most was a white bowl and a tall barrel-shaped vase with his seal impressed front and center. They were always in our home and never failed to grow sensually. He is a remarkable potter and imbues the best of his vessels with a mystery that is realized very slowly through touch and use. Now we have new ones. They’re display plates, (although he would hate that term) and smaller everyday pots for the kitchen. We are learning to know them.” ––Garth Clark.
Leopold Foulem Appointed to Order of Canada
Known for his distinct marriage of Baroque and pop art styles, Foulem employs clay, ready-mades, abstraction and assemblage to investigate and deconstruct queer identity and sexuality.
He has been active for over 50 years and his work has been featured in over 40 solo exhibitions. Foulem was awarded the Jean A. Chalmers National Crafts Award in 1999, the Saidye Bronfman Award for excellence in the fine crafts in 2001 and the 2003 Prix Éloizes as Artist of the Year in the Visual Arts. His work is collected by many museums including the Gardiner Museum, the Los Angeles County Museum, the Montreal Museum of Fine Arts, the Musée national des beaux-arts du Québec, the Canadian Museum of Civilization, the Winnipeg Art Gallery, and the Victoria and Albert Museum.
Check out this vessel formed from the process of electroforming, a unique artistic technique that allows to obtain a crystaline effect. As Fubiz media reports, Sabri Ben-Achour is a electroforming ceramic specialist.
His vessels are real scultpures [sic] and deco objects, having each one a customized shape. His art is all about blue shades that predominates in his universe, obtained thanks to electrodes charges releasing metallic molecules. A very precious artisanal process that is also incredibly resistent [sic] and solid.
Check out more here.
Chongo Brothers names MAIC Living Treasures
Artist brothers Mateo (a painter) and Diego Romero (a ceramic artist), also known as the Chongo Brothers, (Cochiti Pueblo) have been selected as this year’s Living Treasures for the Museum of Indian Arts and Culture (MIAC) Native Treasures Arts Festival in Santa Fe, NM, Native Treasures reports.
Twenty-five years have passed since Diego and Mateo Romero first debuted their work at MIAC with the groundbreaking Chongo Brothers exhibition,” said Della Warrior (Otoe-Missouria), director of MIAC. “While their individual careers continue to soar, we are honored to spotlight their talent, unique perspectives and distinct artistic styles with an exhibition of their current work scheduled to open this March.”
Diego uses traditional pottery to depict the current reservation landscape such as tribal casinos.
“Indian gaming is a relevant issue in the Southwest today. Look around and it’s everywhere. It has to do with Tribal sovereignty. Of course, not all Indian people are for it.” -Diego Romero
The award is designed to spotlight Native American artists who have made outstanding contributions to the field of indigenous arts and culture. Diego and Mateo Romero: A Larger Vision will open in MIAC’s Diker Gallery March 31, 2019 and run through March 1, 2020. Read more here.
Tile of Spain Award 2018
The Tile of Spain Awards verdict was announced late last year naming Joan Miquel Seguí Architecture the winner for their project “New entrance to the intermodal station” in Palama (2016). The project is a transitional space utilizing the Mediterranean tradition of latticework to marry interior and exterior spaces.
Check out the project here.
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