Welcome to our weekly news post on CFile, collecting the newest happenings in the world of contemporary ceramic art and design. To start off this week, we have an item about the Royal College of Art. If our colleagues were taking bets on who would be selected to head the RCA’s ceramics and glass department, they would have lost their money. Roderick Bamford was a selection from left field (or down under) and he starts work in January 2017. An edited statement from the RCA follows, along with some selections of Bamford’s work:
Above image: Roderick Bamford, courtesy of RCA.
Currently Senior Lecturer in the College of Fine Arts, University of New South Wales, Rod Bamford works across the fields of art and design. As practitioner and researcher he draws on experience in the field of ceramics, digital media technologies, and related media. His ceramic artworks investigate the ethics and aesthetics of tension between development, redundancy and waste, a persistent theme in his practice. A member of the RCA’s Digital Craft Network, Rod’s current research extends this discourse to explore relationships between natural and technologically encountered experience and an interest in ethical paradoxes around creative agency and consumption in art and design.
Rod Bamford said: “The RCA’s Ceramics & Glass programme is unparalleled, as evidenced so clearly by its acclaimed graduates, its world-leading research and its impact on culture and industry. I’m honoured to accept the post and I very much look forward to working with students and colleagues both within the programme and across the School of Material, and to encourage diverse ambitions in practice and research across our field.”
Bamford’s research includes the investigation of process aesthetics and its influence on our emotional relationships with material form. A model synthesising qualitative and quantitative design criteria to promote dematerialisation and production agility has been applied to commercial projects including The Cup Suite and Liberare La Forma ranges of porcelain tableware, manufactured by Monno Ceramics, Bangladesh, and distributed by Manfredi Enterprises (2000–10).
He uses traditional and emerging digital recording, fabrication and imaging technologies to test the notion of ‘trans-media’ objects. His artwork Sonic Loop, included as part of the Australian World Expo Pavilion exhibit in Shanghai 2010, explored computer modelling and 3D printing to embody the abstracted expression of musical data in a physical porcelain form.
Frey’s Web Site Values Copyright Over Access
The following is a special comment from CFile Chief Editor Garth Clark:
Viola Frey’s website from her foundation just rolled out today. Hooray! I wondered when something was going to be done to halt this important artist from disappearing in the fine arts. There are no signs of any serious critical writing to buttress a revival of her art, from what we’ve seen of the site. No legacy building, although I am sure her Artist Legacy Foundation does great work for others.
At first look the site is handsome but it lacks generosity. There is a gallery for images, which only allows one to download small (540 pixel) images when 1500 pixel images are now the standard. It’s not much help for students and scholars. We had to swipe an image off the web so we had a picture big enough for us to announce this news.
It seems to me that the Foundation has been more concerned about image copyright than reviving Viola’s career. Holding images hostage is not the way to go. I am sure we will get a cease and desist letter for the image above. Come on, guys: open her to the world! If there is one thing I most remember about my friend it is that she was amazingly generous. — Garth Clark
New Ceramics Gallery coming to the Everson Museum
After about two decades of benign neglect, The Everson Museum is dusting off its crown jewel: its ceramics collection. From Syracuse University (edited):
Syracuse’s Everson Museum of Art, which holds one of the largest ceramics collections in the country, is about to get a big boost in the form of a new gallery to highlight its ceramic gems.
Elizabeth Dunbar, Everson Director & CEO, announced a matching gift campaign to support the relocation of the Museum’s famous ceramics collection. This campaign is being generously funded by long-time Everson Trustee Paul Phillips and his wife Sharon Sullivan. The pair offered to pledge up to $50,000 in this dollar-to-dollar matching campaign.
In addition to serving a functional purpose, this relocation also holds a significant historical importance. The Everson building was designed by world-renowned American architect I.M. Pei. Completed in 1968, the Everson was his first museum design—Pei later designed many others, including the Johnson Museum in Ithaca, The National Gallery in Washington, D.C., and the 1993 addition to the Louvre in Paris. Meant to be seen as a large sculptural object placed amongst the forms of a modern city, Pei purposefully designed each detail of the Everson, inside and out, to be experienced from multiple viewpoints. The new ceramics gallery will return the lower level of the Museum back to Pei’s original design, occupying an area that was specifically intended to feature exhibitions. For the last few decades, the space has served as an education facility for children and family programs.
The ceramics gallery redesign is part of a larger effort to make the Everson’s collection more accessible to Museum patrons. A new education center is also being constructed, and the introduction of the new ceramics gallery will coincide with an ambitious initiative to present much of the Everson’s ceramics collection online.
The Everson Board of Trustees has already collectively pledged more than $22,900 to the campaign. The Museum now seeks help from the public to help fund the rest of the project. Interested donors can visit everson.org/donate to make a donation.
Irina Razumovskaya Takes First Prize
Artist Irina Razumovskaya studies at the Royal College of Art. She was a former artist-in-residence at the Guldagergaard International Ceramic Research Center, she studied fine art and ceramics at Saint Petersburg State Academy of Art and Design and at the Bezalel Academy of Art and Design. She announced on her Facebook recently that she took first prize at the 18th Angelina Alós Ceramics Biennale in Esplugues, a town on the outskirts of Barcelona. The winner, according to the award web site, was her work Metamorphosis, which we’ve pictured here along with a few others. From the award site:
The aim of this award is to encourage participants to re-engage and experiment with new forms of artistic expression through the art of ceramics. In memory of Angelina Alós (Valencia, 1917 – Barcelona, 1997), who was a member of the International Academy of Ceramics, had close ties with the city of Esplugues and founded the Award in 1998 as part of the 10th edition of the Ceramics Biennale, the event now bears her name. In the last edition, which included many international entries,146 works were submitted and 24 of these were selected.
Do you love or loathe these missives from the world of contemporary ceramic art? Let us know in the comments.