This exhibition showcases the work of eleven artists who effortlessly integrate video into their studio practice. Some artists use cameras to document their work being used (or abused). Others use video to document a process that is perhaps more important to them than finished, fired objects. All of these pieces have a life of their own on the Internet, where they can be shared in ways that physical objects cannot.
The artists represented in this exhibition are well aware of video pioneers like Bruce Nauman, who was a student of ceramic artist Robert Arneson, and Nam Jun Paik, but most wear the mantle lightly, using video as one more tool in their arsenal. Thrill to the sheer diversity of approaches on view — from persona to process, and from the politics of consumption to surprising ways that clay can behave (or misbehave).
Showing/Making, Curator’s Talk with Garth Johnson: Thursday, February 11, 2016, 6:30 pm
This 60-minute multimedia lecture explores the work of a new generation of young artists who grew up with easy access to video and social media. Recent years have seen an explosion of work that uses video to not only document process, but to show the use (and abuse) of the work and extend their studio practice. Warning: THIS LECTURE CONTAINS AN EROTIC POETRY READING that may be unsuitable for some audiences.
About Garth Johnson:
Studio artist, writer, curator and educator Garth Johnson is curator of ceramics at the ASU Art Museum in Tempe, Arizona. Before moving to Tempe in 2014, Garth served as the Curator of Artistic Programs at The Clay Studio in Philadelphia and spent seven years as a Professor at College of the Redwoods in Eureka, California. He is a self-described craft activist who explores craft’s influence and relevance in the 21st century. His weblog, Extreme Craft, is a “Compendium of Art Masquerading as Craft, Craft Masquerading as Art, and Craft Extending its Middle Finger.” His first book, 1000 Ideas for Creative Reuse was published by Quarry in November 2009. He has also contributed to the books Handmade Nation, Craftivity, Craft Corps and the Smithsonian American Art Museum’s new book Nation Building. Johnson recently completed a term as a Director-at-Large on the board of the National Council on Education for the Ceramic Arts (NCECA). He is leading a task force for a publication that will anthologize contributions to the NCECA Journal for their 50th Anniversary in 2016. Recently, Johnson served as a juror for the highly coveted Zanesville Prize for Contemporary Ceramics, which carries a Best-of-Show award of $20,000 and $10,000 in additional awards. Watch his TEDx talk Recycling Sucks: The History of Creative Reuse on how reuse and recycling has been used throughout the ages.
Recycled China: The Residue of Industry, Artist’s Talk with Thomas Schmidt: April 21, 2016 6 pm
Artist Thomas Schmidt shares his experience teaching at the Alfred and CAFA Ceramic Design for Industry Program in Beijing. While living in China Schmidt and collaborator Jeffrey Miller co-founded Recycled China, a design team that upcycles industrial waste to create architectural tile and design works. Through their work and video documentation, Schmidt and Miller explore the complexities and contradictions of ceramic traditions and modern industry in China.
About Thomas Schmidt
Thomas Schmidt received his BA at Loyola University Chicago in 2004, Post-Baccalaureate Certificate at The School of The Art Institute of Chicago in 2006, and MFA at the New York State College of Ceramics at Alfred University in 2009. Thereafter, Schmidt worked for four years as a Professor of ceramic design at the Alfred/CAFA Ceramic Design for Industry program in Beijing where he and partner Jeffrey Miller co-founded the design team Recycled China whose work uses industrial waste within China to create architectural tile and sculptural objects.
The work of Recycled China received the Bronze Prize at the 8th Gyeonggi International Ceramic Biennale 2015 in South Korea and was recently acquired by Victoria and Albert Museum in London. Thomas Schmidt currently holds the position of Assistant Professor of Interdisciplinary 3D Studio and Digital Fabrication in the College of Arts and Architecture at The University of North Carolina at Charlotte. Additional information and images can be seen at thomasschmidt.org
Ghetto Craft: A Place Where Poverty and Porcelain Intersect, Artist’s Talk with Roberto Lugo: May 12, 2016 6:30 pm
Roberto Lugo, Professor of Ceramics at Marlboro College will discuss his work in relationship to eclecticism and culture. By juxtaposing street graffiti, European decorative patterning, and rich symbolism drawn from his Puerto Rican heritage, Roberto Lugo will discuss how his work serves as a hybrid of visual art traditions and stimulates new conversations surrounding cultural tolerance.
About Roberto Lugo:
I am a potter, social activist, spoken word poet, and educator. All of these roles are rooted in my childhood. Today my graffiti is defacing social inequality. I see my pottery as a process of transforming the ground we walk on into something we eat from; we search all day for the perfect spot to put it on display. In many ways this transformation of tragedy into triumph is a metaphor for my life’s story.
My experiences as an indigent minority inform my version of Puerto Rican American history. With my education in critical theory, art education, art history, and studio art I have developed a studio practice that fluidly communicates with diverse audiences. I bring art to those that do not believe they need to see it and engage in deeper ways of knowing, learning and thinking. robertolugostudio.com
Recorded Matter: Ceramics in Motion is organized and curated by Arizona State University Art Museum Ceramics Research Center Curator, Garth Johnson. This program is funded in part by the N.C. Arts Council’s Grassroots Arts Program through the Asheville Area Arts Council.
Cover Image: Ben Harle, Percolation Theory, digital video, 2013
CCCD’s Curatorial Fellowship is a yearlong program created to give emerging curators a platform to explore and test new ideas about craft. Of 54 applications received, three Curatorial Fellowship teams have been selected to fully develop and mount their proposed exhibition in CCCD’s Benchspace Gallery & Workshop, during the 2017 exhibition season. The Curatorial Fellows will work with CCCD staff to produce the exhibition, develop didactic material and an exhibition catalog, and deliver a curatorial talk.