Welcome back again to Spotted, our beginning-of-the-week roundup of ephemera from the world of contemporary ceramic art! Don’t assume that just because these entries are bite-sized that they deserve any less of your attention. We like running Spotted each week because it gives our site perspective, it shows exactly how vast and broad this tiny little world of ours can be.
Above image: Russ Orlando, Modifier #101; digital photograph, slip and hand-built porcelain. Photographs courtesy of the artist.
Up first this week is Russ Orlando! Orlando, according to his biography, earned his MFA in ceramics from Cranbrook Academy of Art. His work has been shown across the country, including the Northern Clay Center in Minneapolis, MN, the Mattress Factory Art Museum, Pittsburgh, PA, the Detroit Institute of Arts and the Museum of Contemporary Art Detroit (MOCAD). In 2009, he was a recipient of the Kresge Artist Fellowship. He has been an adjunct professor at Wayne State University, as well as a visiting artist and lecturer. He states on his Artaxis page:
“I feel a fascination for the incomplete, the unresolved. These gestures come from a locus that I both know and do not know. Whether physically present in my pieces or shadows left behind from explorations, I aim to highlight the transformative during the process of making.”
Andrew Hoeppner: Monkey God
Seattle’s Gallery4Culture recently wrapped up an exhibition by Andrew Hoeppner, Monkey God (Seattle, July 7 – August 8). The artist told the gallery about the concept behind the ceramic works on display:
“Hoeppner states, ‘Monkey God is a metaphor I use to describe the perception of self. This exhibition explores the definition of humanity. What does it mean to be human? What does it mean to have language, the ability to read, think, and write? How have we developed a collective consciousness and the power to intuit? What makes me a man, and you a woman? What is our relationship to the natural world? In their own way, each object is an attempt to answer these questions.’”
Hoeppner, according to his biography, received a BFA in Ceramics from Sierra Nevada College in 2011. He then pursued post-baccalaureate studies at the University of Montana and completed an internship and international residency at Medalta in Medicine Hat, Alberta, Canada. In 2014, Andrew graduated with a MFA in Sculpture from the University of Washington’s 3D4M program and traveled to Vallauris, France, progressing his work at the Vallauris Residency while studying the ceramic collection of Pablo Picasso and the paintings of Henri Matisse. Andrew is currently an Artist in Residence at Seattle’s Pottery Northwest, the Pacific Northwest’s premier ceramics facility. He was just awarded a 2016 Fellowship from Artist Trust.
Hideaki Suzuki at Micheko Galerie
Micheko Galerie in Munich specializes in contemporary art from Japan, sold to collectors in Europe and abroad. We came across some selections they had from artist Hideaki Suzuki that we just had to share with you today. Prices and images are from Artsy:
Both Cosmic Skull and Cosmic Rabbit- Sake Cup have us in awe. The rich gold set against the fragmented geometry of each is something to behold. There’s a sense that each is an artifact, the skull especially. The skull reminds me of old European saints that are covered in jewels before they’re interred in a crypt beneath the church. The skull isn’t quite as grim as those dark ages relics, rather it seems to be a larger manifestation of Death, or at least this world’s concept of it.
“TRUNK” by Nosigner
A studio based out of Japan, Nosigner states that their name stands for “professionals who make intangible things.” The group strives to work “beyond conventional disciplines for a more holistic design.” About three years ago they came out with “TRUNK,” a design for a vase that is so simple, you have to wonder why you didn’t think of it yourself. The vase was designed for Colors.
From the studio:
TRUNK is the most natural form of displaying flowers. If the essence of flower display is to observe the form it takes upon growth, then perhaps the most natural vase for it is a tree. We worked together with Nobuaki Kawahara (Flower designer) to develop a ceramic vase in the mold of an actual tree bark that blends together with the flower, almost creating a single organism.
Hopkins, Oesterritter and Wilkey at Santa Fe Clay
This comes to us from CFile’s back yard of Santa Fe, New Mexico. Santa Fe Clay is holding an exhibition of Bryan Hopkins, Lindsay Oesterritter and Bill Wilkey, Sept. 2 — Oct. 22. The following is a statement from the organization, edited for length.
Santa Fe Clay is bringing three talented ceramic artists together for an exhibition of functional and non-functional ceramic artwork. Bryan Hopkins, Lindsay Oesterritter and Bill Wilkey are mid-career artists, each pushing the boundaries of the medium in their own unique way.
Bryan Hopkins will be exhibiting work from his non-functional Dysfunction Series. Hopkins challenges the archetypal functionality of the clay pot as a container for physical, tangible objects, and instead puts forth the premise that the clay vessel is capable of more than just holding fruit or presenting flowers.
Lindsay Oesterritter is fascinated by the slow and natural changes that are constantly, yet imperceptibly, altering our daily environments, how the seemingly permanent is being perpetually altered through weathering and time. Oesterritter has captured that sense of natural aging through the masterful use of a reduction-cooled wood-fueled firing process.
Bill Wilkey takes great care in the crafting of each of his objects. He is acutely aware of the new life and relationships that each cup and pitcher will take on after they leave his studio. Wilkeyʼs intentionality is evident in his careful craftsmanship of each object. He draws his inspiration from experiences in his own life, which in turn informs his very personal aesthetic.
Simon van der Ven’s 3-Year Vase
Maine artist Simon van der Ven dropped a bombshell on us earlier this month when he posted a vase to his Facebook page with the note: “Over three years in the making and now it’s done. Well worth the effort, well worth the patience. Here is his carved porcelain work, accompanied by Simon’s description of it in his own words. For comparison, we’re showing it alongside “The 10,000 Hour Vase” by Adelaide Robineau, another fantastic, painstaking work of carved porcelain.
From the artist:
I started this piece over three years ago. I’ve done others like it, but not to this level of detail. Initially, I threw a number of vases in this form, but chose this one to carve. It took days and days to draw the pattern. When I finally started carving, it took about three days to rough carve one vertical row. I got a bit faster as time went on. There are forty rows. I would work on it for a length of time and either lose patience, focus, or be called to another task before setting it aside. After the first month of working on it, I seldom worked on it for more than a week at time. At one point, I thought that I couldn’t finish it, but a supportive and enthusiastic collector encouraged me to push through. Once I finished carving, I bisque fired it and found myself at another hurdle. Glaze. I was nearly paralyzed by the possibility of getting the glaze wrong. There are potters who live to glaze. I don’t fall in that category. My solution was to make smaller ‘test’ pieces. You may be able to recognize a few on the website. After several attempts I found the right glaze combination and application. Et voila! I’m curious to see where in the world it goes.
The Red Clay Rambler Pays a Visit to Meow Wolf
Friend of CFile Ben Carter came to visit us in Santa Fe a few weeks back. You may know Ben from his fantastic Tales of a Red Clay Rambler podcast, which we sometimes feature in articles. During his stay, we got a picture of Ben visiting Meow Wolf’s “House of Eternal Return.” The exhibition is housed inside an old bowling alley, purchased for the Meow Wolf installation art collective by landlord and A Song of Ice and Fire (“Game of Thrones” to the posers) author George R.R. Martin. The space is large enough to hold a Victorian house, a forest, an arcade and a concert venue and it employs many local artists, including myself. It’s also one of the most Instagrammable art exhibitions in the country. Here we see Ben sitting inside Dylan Pommer’s Cartoon Kitchen, a room designed to look as though it was drawn by hand.
Thanks for visiting, Ben. Hope to see you again soon!
Bill Rodgers is the Managing Editor of cfile.daily.
Do you love or loathe these works of contemporary ceramic art? Let us know in the comments.