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A Celebration of Ceramics
Dates: Through October 21, 2018
Location: Kaaterskill Fine Arts Gallery, Hunter Village Square, 7950 Main Street, Village of Hunter
Gallery Hours: Friday, Saturday & Monday, 11 am-5:30 pm; Sunday 11 am-4:00 PM
More Information: 518 263 2060
Oval Cistern by Emma Louise Kaye
“...For the materials and processes of pottery spoke to me of cosmic presences and transformations quite as surely as the pots themselves enchanted me. Experiences of the plastic clay and the firing of the ware carried more than commonplace values. Joy resonated deep within me, and it has stirred these thoughts only slowly to the surface. I have come to feel that we live in a universe of spirit, which materializes and de-materializes grandly; all things seem to me to live, and all acts to contain meaning deeper than matter-of-fact; and the things we do with deepest love and interest compels us by the spiritual forces which dwell in them. This seems to me to be the dialogue of the visible and the invisible to which our ears are attuned....”
—Centering, M.C. Richards
Making functional and non-functional forms out of clay is one of the oldest arts that we know of and, like drawing, the hand of the maker is revealed in each piece. It seems simple; take some earth and add water, then fire in an oven (kiln) ... ceramics!
Yet, working with clay is not so simple. There’s a lot of technical knowledge needed to build and successfully fire ceramic pieces; the density, viscosity, weight, moisture retention, air temperature ... all of this comes into play when working with clay ... and we haven’t even begun to consider the world of glazes, which one can spend a lifetime on and never achieve complete mastery.
“Clay is an extremely versatile and fascinating material ... Unlike other media, there is a sense of unpredictability and mystery surrounding clay once it enters the kiln; it is never fully within our control and outcomes are not guaranteed. It is the investigation into the unknown, the potential of discovery and reward, that challenges artists to keep pushing beyond the boundaries.”
—The Ceramics Bible, Louisa Taylor
Every culture that I know of has a connection to and relationship with clay. Why? Working with clay seems to transcend language, geography and culture.
The world of ceramics is diverse. One can employ many types of clay in order to produce work in any of the following categories: tableware, decoration, medical, sculpture, figurative, art installation and vessel, which is the focus of our exhibition, HOLD. This theme was selected, in part, because of the question, “What do we hold dear?” As you walk through the exhibition I hope that you will remember that each of these pieces was first held dearly by the hands that made them, then, released by the artist’s hands into the hold of the kiln, heated and then cooled, becaming available for each of us to behold its beauty with an opportunity to make its story part of our lives. What would you like to put inside one?
As part of the Catskill Mountain Foundation’s 20th anniversary celebration, we are offering, HOLD, a survey of ceramic works by Dana Bechert, Susan Beecher, Black Tree Studios, Susan Bogen, Bright Side Ceramics, Stephanie Charlene, Carolyn Duke, Emma Louise Kaye, Jeffrey Kleckner, Ben Krupa, l & m studio, Cheyenne Mallo, Susan Miller, Beth Mueller, Meredith Nichols & Harry Kuhnardt, Tygart Pottery, Ruth Sachs, Marilee Schumann, Asia Sosnowski, Ben Suga, Tivoli Tile Works, Sarah-Anne Winchester, and Z Pots.
Along with HOLD, we’ll also be showing Upstate: Constructed Paintings, mixed media by Russell De Young, and Wonder in Wood, paintings by Mehdi Ghafghazi. Russell De Young's work will be shown courtesy of Carrie Haddad Gallery.
—Robert Tomlinson, Kaaterskill Fine Arts Gallery Director