I am a multimedia artist working primarily in ceramic sculpture. My work engages in conversation with still life, narrative, and abstract painting; postminimalist sculpture; hierarchies of materials and taste; and the role of the kitsch object. By traversing the boundaries between "art” objects and materials and "non-art” objects and materials, I look to analyze the spaces occupied by art and decoration and the visual cues associated with these categories.
I have developed a unique process through which I transform collectible kitsch ceramic objects and functional ware into fine art sculptures. After collecting and arranging various items, I subject them all to the same firing conditions. The process produces the literal and metaphorical melting down of the materiality of domestic and artistic space. In the firing, some objects retain their form, while others melt down into fluid clay and glaze. Materials mix together creating swirls of color and pattern and globs of texture and form. Lowbrow kitsch objects merge into painting and sculpture in compositions that seem to suggest both the opposition and equalization of decoration, materials, and form.
My series, “Motherhood Secrets”, incorporates a metaphorical relationship with personal narrative, connecting with my experience as a new mother. In this series, halved wheel-thrown vessels are filled with ceramic material, fired, and ground and polished; producing a finished surface that resembles a ceramic geode in objects that function as metaphors for my own maternal experience—a metamorphic soup of isolation, insulation, and potentiality.
In my work using jewelry chain, I have looked to collected thrift shop paintings for inspiration. Appearing as intimate line drawings, the compositions made with jewelry chain reference both still life, landscape, and portrait paintings through friction between the visual line of the chain and the draping created by its weight. The figure/ground opposition is borrowed directly from the conventions of painting and drawing, but the material ties it to the dimensionality of sculpture. I aim to make the read of the objects slippery, aesthetically and conceptually.
Recently, I have been working on a group of coil-built ceramic vessel pieces made with a combination of white porcelain, colored porcelain, a dark-bodied stoneware, and terracotta. I am firing the pieces to the high temperatures suited for the stoneware and porcelain bodies. As the terracotta is a low-fire material, it is unable to withstand the Cone 10 firing, melting and bubbling. All of the effect of the surface and texture is in the clay itself as there is no glaze used. In developing this work, I am meditating on the precariousness of existence that we have all felt over the past couple of years, as though almost coming apart at the seams, while trying to manufacture a sense of “normalcy”.