Tuesday, April 3, 2012

Ceramic Crush at the La Mesa table #1

The 'La Mesa' exhibit was full of amazing tableware! Naturally I was quite taken with Ursula Hargens' work, which was new to me and most reminded me of some of my own floral designs and methods of glazing.  Isn't it pretty with it's lovely folk-art florals? So cheerful and fresh in earthenware with coloured slips underneath the glaze design.  To find out a little more about her method of glazing, check out this article on Ceramics Arts Daily, along with a little more visuals on the Schaller Gallery website.

Donna Polseno's square plates were beautifully glazed in a matt black and yellow combination that worked well together.  With her practice divided into both sculpture and functional pottery, these pots seem like blank canvases for her beautiful glaze designs.  More on her work at the Plinth Gallery and an interview about her practice where you find out that at one point she changed gears in the medium and her previous galleries and clients basically dropped the new work flat out.  Somehow she persevered with the new work and got through it- she just felt she needed to move on.  Very inspiring and thought provoking read...
 Hearkening me back to the 70's (in a good way), Mark Cole's work reminded me of West German pottery with it's matt drippy glazes and abstract designs in shades of brown. I also loved the shape of this wheel-thrown bowl, which would look amazing on a teak side-table full of walnuts with a nut-cracker inside.  Takes a person back, doesn't it?  Anyways, to find more of his great pots, along with his mammoth-sized mugs, perfect for those who love large mugs of coffee (and have big hands too), there are a few on the Red Lodge Clay Centre website.  
And last for this La Mesa post, is the work of Kirk Lyttle, who's work is a playful take on traditional wood-fired (?some info says salt-fired, but it looks more wood-fired to me...) ceramics.  While this year's theme at NCECA should have been titled 'The year of the bunny' (seriously the number of rabbits as sculpture or decoration was a bit staggering), I was totally smitten with his little cartoon story book illustrations with just the right amount of engobes, slip, and flashing to make me smile. 

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