... The Emerging Artists issue... Loved it, loved it, loved it. I know it's a little late and we are all already feeling the joy that is Diana Fayt's cover in the June issue, but I still wanted to share my favorites from last month because there were so many.
Shay Church now lives and works in his home state of Michigan once again after completing his MFA at San Jose State University in 2007. His work explores the relationship between humans and nature by showcasing clay in its most simple state-- wet. By allowing our beloved medium to generate its own life cycle away from the effects of the flame, Church allows us to witness the fragility of our world and ruminate upon our footsteps.
(image via Flickr member durga_akv)
Merrie Wright works out of Tyler, Texas and also explores the relationship between humans and nature. Her exploration leads us to examine the means for survival which animals are left with in the current state of our grand environment. Her work asks us what happens when nature and industrialization collide.
(image via Flickr member clamtrafficjam)
Ryan Olsen is an artist in residence at the Red Lodge Clay Center in Red Lodge, Montana... my own home sweet home... His work is so beautiful that the viewer is nearly blind to its crazy functionality. Olsen's work at first glance enchants viewers with the magic of an intricate blossom. Upon closer inspection, however, the viewer discovers that these pieces are not in fact botanical-like sculptures but fully functioning sets of pottery that are entangled in each other to create a magnificent work of art. The balance between beauty and function perfectly echoes the wonders we experience in the natural world.
(image via Lovell Chronicle)
Joseph Page is an unconventional clay artist from Walla Walla, Washington. His fearlessness in choosing and combining unkosher materials is a breath of fresh air. Page's illustrative sculptures evoke images of atom bombs and Dr. Seuss, farm life and Mario Brothers, cotton candy and scientific diagram. This artist's unique combination of imagery mirrors his combination of materials (porcelain and polystyrene foam?) as both ask the viewer "Is this really okay?"
Andréa Keys hails from Athens, Ohio. She is a figurative sculptor who says her work is "driven by a desire to investigate how an individual's personal history affects their identity, behaviors, and actions." I haven't seen that in her work through photos here and there, but I am greatly intrigued by the expressiveness of her figures. There is a curious innocence or naivety that pours from these sculptures that asks me, "Why are you staring at me?" And I don't have an answer. And that makes me want to keep staring.
(image via ArtAxis.org)
Raymond González is a young sculptor currently working in Gainsville, Florida. His shocking and vibrant curios seem like a cross breed between Virginia Scotchie's work and those cheap little personal massagers one can purchase from Walgreens in the health aisle. González's use of alternative materials and surfaces like car enamel and radiant light technology is inspiring. His objects are irresistible and the viewer most definatly looks at them with a tactile longing for it seems to hold them and tinker about with their functions would be an ultimate experience.
(image via Amarillo Museum of Art)