Welcome to Spotted, our weekly guide to ephemera from the world of contemporary ceramics and contemporary ceramic art! We’re starting things off with an update from Corwyn Lund, written by CFile’s Editor-in-Chief Garth Clark.
Above image: Reflective tile work by Corwyn Lund, the subject of Garth’s mini-editorial in this week’s Spotted.
Toronto artist Corwyn Lund produced this eye-popping tile panel with more to follow. At first glace there may be a reference to Dawson’s trompe l’eiol building “For Eloise” but in snooping around Lund’s Facebook albums (privacy is so yesterday) I came across this photograph Lund took two years ago while he was a resident in Den Bosch, the Netherlands, at the European Ceramic Work Center. My guess is that this was the genesis. Either way, it’s a great direction for the multi-media artist’s engagement with ceramics. — Garth Clark
Ian McDonald at Patrick Parrish Gallery, NYC
Index, Thumb, Thumb, Index, (New York City, July 12 – Sept. 1) was a solo exhibition of new ceramic works by Oregon-based artist Ian McDonald, according to a gallery statement. The exhibition introduced a series of architectural ceramic vessels made in parts, some arranged on a series of richly colorful powder-coated trays and assembled to create architectural models, ambiguous part compositions read horizontally and in profile.
Ahead of the exhibition, Sight Unseen ran a brief interview with McDonald. Go here to read the interview in full. From Sight Unseen:
What inspired the name of this show: Index, Thumb, Thumb, Index?
If you hold your hands out, with your thumbs together and your index fingers up, you’re creating a sort of frame, like you’re taking a picture. A lot of work that I’ve done in the past has been about arranging objects within a finite space, and in this case, pieces are organized on powder-coated trays so that in a way, the tray is acting as a frame. It’s a way to contextualize the objects. The ceramics themselves look quite industrial, but they’re all completely handmade at the potter’s wheel in a very traditional way. So the idea of Index, Thumb, Thumb, Index has a lot to do with the hand.
Funeral Ceramics at Bonner Kunstverein
Bonner Kunstverein, a gallery in Bonn Germany, recently wrapped up a showing by Phung-Tien Phan, an artist who used sculptural ceramics to create traditional burial sites (Bonn, Germany, July 1 – August 14). Her work was supported by the Studio for Propositional Cinema. From Bonner Kunstverein:
Phung-Tien Phan will present a series of eight sculptures based upon traditional gravesites in Vietnam. Clad with ceramic tiles, Phan’s tiered structures not only reference ancient Vietnamese tombs but also reflect modern Western architecture and urban planning. They will be accompanied by a new film that employs references to popular culture to humorously pose questions about issues including creativity, privilege, and consumption.
Studio for Propositional Cinema will exhibit the off-set printing plates for ‘Scenes at an Inauguration’, a new play based upon the Studio’s 2013 inaugural performance at Kunstverein für die Rheinlande und Westfalen, Düsseldorf in 2013. Written in collaboration with the artist Keren Cytter, the text is a layered fiction derived from scripted and improvised dialogue spoken by both official and unofficial participants at the event.
Phung-Tien Phan (b. 1983, Essen) studied at Folkwang University of the Arts, Essen and Kunstakademie Düsseldorf. Her work has been exhibited at Cité Internationale des Arts, Paris, Kunsthalle Düsseldorf and Museum Folkwang, Essen. She lives and works in Essen where since 2014, as a member of the artist group New Bretagne, she has run Belle Air’s exhibition programme.
Dennis Oppenheim, Performance Piece, 2000
This sculpture by the late Dennis Oppenheim threw us for a loop at first. It’s the kind of surreal that gets you wondering whether you’re looking at a Photoshopped image. Our fearless editor-in-chief came across this picture on Facebook and it took a few minutes of Googling to determine where it came from. Oppenheim (1938 – 2011) was a New York-based creator who worked in conceptual art, performance, body art and the early land art movement. Here’s what his site has to say about this twisting brick kiln:
This piece invites one to consider the fusion of architecture and musical performance. A chimney is turned into a wind instrument, suggesting one could play, or perform it. The cavity of a functional object (chimney) is considered for it’s sound producing qualities. In the same way, one could consider, playing or performing a building, by walking through it. Installed at Johnson County Community College, Oveland Park, Kansas.
Do you love or loathe these works of contemporary ceramic art? Let us know in the comments.