Kentucky Artisan Center at Berea
April 7 Artist Reception for Ceramics Exhibition – "Handbuilt: Kentucky Clay Artisans" at Kentucky Artisan Center
An artist reception for the public will be held on Saturday, April 7 from 1:00 – 3:00 pm where visitors can gather and meet participants in the Center’s new exhibition, Handbuilt: Kentucky Clay Artisans. Visitors are invited to talk with clay artists, enjoy a reception, and view the exhibition which focuses on handbuilt works in clay by Kentucky’s ceramic artisans. Works in this exhibit are made using a variety of forming techniques as well as the potters wheel. The exhibit runs through June 4, 2007 at the Kentucky Artisan Center at Berea.
Featuring works by 46 Kentucky potters and ceramicists, this exhibit includes both functional and sculptural works, teapots, platters, bottles, pit-fired and Raku fired abstract forms, sculptural statements about culture, the environment, and nature as well as whimsical figures, houses, and effigy forms.
These works use a wide variety of handbuilding techniques - coil building, slab construction, extruding of forms, alteration and clay additions to thrown forms – all done in arresting combinations. The firing of these pieces is also varied – from pit-firing in sawdust, to gas firing, electric firing, straw firing, wood firing and Raku firing using a wide variety of clays.
The pliable nature of clay allows it to be used in an infinite number of ways and this exhibit illuminates the many forms and ideas that can be conveyed. Sculptural house forms by Joe Molinaro echo pre-Columbian dwellings, and Keiko Akiyama has created floating shrines in the form of boats with towers that translate as dwellings. Wanda Frankum Green has built a brilliantly glazed temple jar fired in the Raku method, and Ann Legris has created a group of small houses fired in straw which has adorned the tiny dwellings with flashes of carbon.
This exhibition includes figurative sculpture both realistic and abstract by Carol Hale, Teresa Cole, and a 34 inch sculptural representation of the “Artist Holding a Vase” by David Waltz. Carolyn Zolman creates women figures from clay that are doll-like in detail and size, while Fred Wiesener builds elegant tall “Ladies” from slabs of clay, and Wayne Ferguson sculpts clay animals that resonate like spirit totems.
Functional pottery forms are also in evidence with slab built bowls by Marianne Brown, colorful slab plates by Wayne Bates, wood fired and stoppered ewers by Matthew Gaddie, a tall umbrella stand by Greg Seigel, and melted marshmallow looking canisters by Dan Selter.
The natural world and the environment are also beautifully rendered by Steve Driver with his “Heron Teapot” and “Fish Caviar Platter.” Mihoko Sato has created a platter from handbuilt slab leaf forms, and Judith Pointer Jia has built “Bins” that are grouped and mounted onto slate and appear as abstract tree trunks. A marriage of animal forms and function occurs in the work of Marie-Elena Ottman’s “Bird Vessel” and Black Bear (Stephen LaBoueff) has etched hummingbirds onto his burnished coil built vessel.
Included in this exhibition are works by Kentucky artists Keiko Akiyama, Crestwood; Wayne Bates, Murray; Stephen LaBoueff (Black Bear), Morehead; Linda Bowman, Louisville; Bob Brigl, Bowling Green; Marianne Brown, Lawrenceburg; Karen Brown-Levy, Louisville; Page Candler, Campbellsville; Cynthia Carr, Harrodsburg; Gayle Cerlan, Lexington; Fong Choo, Louisville; Jean Cochran, New Haven; Teresa Cole, Berea; Steve Driver, Owensboro; Amy Elswick, Louisville; Jeff Enge, Berea; Wayne Ferguson, Louisville; Wanda Frankum Green, Louisville; Sarah Frederick, Louisville; Matthew Gaddie, Bardstown; Susan Goldstein, Lexington; Carol Hale, Richmond; Suzy Hatcher, Louisville; Char Arnett Howington, Nicholasville; Walter Hyleck, Berea; Judith Pointer Jia, Danville; Jana John, Louisville; Ann Legris, Mays Lick; Judy Miner, Prospect; Joe Molinaro, Winchester; Marie-Elena Ottman, Crestwood; Martha Puckett, Louisville; Wyman Rice, Lexington; Mitchell Rickman, Bowling Green; Laura Ross, Prospect; Melvin Rowe, Louisville; Mihoko Sato, Louisville; Greg Seigel, Owenton; Dan Selter, Lexington; David Craig Waltz, Columbia; Bill Whitt, Waco; Fred Wiesener, Maysville; Philip Wiggs, Berea; Jim Wright, Richmond; Michael Zoeller, New Haven; and Carolyn Zolman, Lexington.
Special Exhibitions like “Handbuilt: Kentucky Clay Artisans” are regularly featured at the Kentucky Artisan Center, located just off Interstate 75 at exit 77 (Berea). The Center’s exhibits, shopping, and travel information areas are all open daily from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. and the café from 8 a.m. to 7:30 p.m. Admission is free. The Center currently features works by more than 650 artisans from all across the Commonwealth. For more information call 859-985-5448 or visit the Center’s web site at www.kentuckyartisancenter.ky.gov
The Kentucky Artisan Center at Berea is an agency in the Commerce Cabinet.