I have found myself continually returning to the idea of cumulative information, asking myself questions such as, how can information reveal itself through repetitive process? Perhaps more importantly, before those ideas, I am seeking to understand my personal encounter with material from a fundamental perspective. What happens when I touch clay? What should I do with it? And how does it operate as a means of recording action?
Nearly every human being has had the experience of squeezing clay, forming coils, creating form. I often think in terms of these types of primal, instinctual actions/experiences, but seek to place my methods on a spectrum. I aim to create with direct (yet often mediated) processes and am always observant of my engagement with material. Clay is primary, but anything that makes its way into my studio becomes a part of the dialog. I am interested in highlighting interactions between my body and material, as well as ephemeral processes that are often only visible in the studio. I ultimately aim to produce work intuitively, and often think of the advice of Sol Lewitts famous letter to Eva Hesse, You must practice being stupid, dumb, unthinking, empty. Then you will be able to DO!
I find I am most satisfied with my production when I am able to work in a thus inspired intuitive mode, only later making sense and order of what I am doing. My goals through this approach are to shed some light on the intangible acts of making, providing notions of both entropy and potentiality. Given a large enough sample size, what can we learn through these actions? When placed into systems, stacked upon one another, do they reveal patterns, in/consistency, potentially something unexpected and new?
My cast-and-assembled sculpture explores the design and assembly of modular geometric units. The work is split into two distinct bodies. My vessel forms are created by duplicating detailed crystal glassware, while my sculptural geometric elements are designed using Computer Aided Drafting (CAD) software. My final products communicate the exacting nature of the design and mould making processes.
I base many designs around the idea of function, referencing my initial attraction to the ceramic medium. Spouts, handles, lids, feet and bodies are composed with a focus on linear and planar interactions. This provides a conceptual framework from which I create component parts necessary to fulfill the desired function of a given object. My composite constructions take on the forms of elaborately re-imagined everyday vessels in addition to purely sculptural biomorphic and architectural abstractions.
CAD software enables me to accurately visualize objects prior to their construction. I devote a significant amount of time to the design phase in order to insure versatility before the creation of a prototype. Inspirations come from a love of geometry, modern architecture and farm machinery commonly seen while growing up in rural southeast Kansas. Repeated production and reconfiguration of modular elements allows me to create and continually refine similar yet unique objects.
Elaborate networks of edges and planes are the perfect canvas on which to paint by soda firing. This is due to the non-aggressive manner in which the soda vapor moves through the kiln and around work. This leads to a high concentration of soda on the edges transitioning to very little in the concave corners. The variability of this firing process enables me to maintain an element of risk and excitement in my practice. I manipulate highly variable slips that rely on their placement, kiln atmosphere, and the application of soda during the firing to develop the surface finish. My ability to control these variables adds to the individuality of each piece.