Holidazzle 2000: Clay Wonderland
November 9 to December 30, 2000
Sponsored by Brown-Forman Corporation
Clay is a most malleable material made from decomposing rock and various organic materials, which can be formed into shapes while wet and solidified through exposure to high temperatures in a kiln. Clay can be coarse or fined-grained and is divided into categories such as earthenware, stoneware, and porcelain. Forms made from clay can be functional or decorative or somewhere in between. Glazes can be applied to decorate the form or make it non-porous. Random effects of the kiln, whether desired or accidental, are caused by chemical reactions on the clay body during firing. The opening of a kiln after firing can bring joy or heartbreak. All of these basic elements combine to make the creation of clay arts a risky business.
Artist who chose to work with clay both embrace its versatility and the challenges it presents. It is a most accessible medium - ceramic objects are found nearly everywhere, from the kitchen to the table, from sculpture to bathroom fixtures. This age-old utilitarian and artistic medium can be coaxed into serving as a container for objects as well as ideas.
Clay artist, are bound together by common experiences. Each, whether making vessel-related or sculptural forms, works with the limitation of the material, wrestles with the practical issues of clay body selection, making glazes, and the method of firing. The labor is often messy and strenuous. Like other skill-based professions, those working in clay enjoy discussing specific techniques, sharing personal experience and common knowledge. Each artist is an entrepreneur, with the sale of works, oftentimes augmented by teaching, providing income.
The potters of Kentucky are among the best of our craft artists. They live in all manner of settings, both urban and rural, ranging from Sarah Roush in Paducah to Larry Watson in Alexandria Kentucky.
For Holidazzle: Clay Wonderland, we have invited our artists to use their considerable skills to create oversize functional pieces - a platter fit for a king, a teapot for 30, cups and saucers for copious amounts of caffeine for example - as well as exaggerated, whimsical sculptural objects of all descriptions.
Participating artists include: Yerger André, Wayne Bates, Michelle Coakes, Fong Choo, Patrick Dougherty, Amy Elswick, Jeff Enge, Wayne Ferguson, Laura George, Gwen Heffner, Tonya Johnson, John Martin, Judy Miner, Joe Molinaro, Brian Newton, Davie Reneau, Trent Ripley, Steve Davis Rosenbaum, Laura Ross, Sarah Roush, Dan Selter and Larry Watson.
©1998-2000 Kentucky Art and Craft Foundation, 609 West Main Street, Louisville, KY 40202