My artistic journey started in Ceramics. Recently, I have revisited this unique, often overlooked medium.
In 1977, I attended graduate school in Ceramics at Cranbrook Academy of Art. It was an elite art school started by Bauhaus people who came over after the war. There were 7 departments at Cranbrook at the time, with about 13 students in each department, chosen from all over the world.
All of the students had graduated from outstanding undergraduate art programs. I had gone to undergraduate school in English, and had no idea what art was. The only thing I had going for me was that I knew I didn’t know what art was.
I had an interview with the head of the department, whose name was Richard Devore. He was a highly acclaimed ceramic artist of his time. I was honest with him that I didn’t know anything about art but I was determined to learn. To make a long story short, Richard Devore let me in on a conditional basis. It changed my life.
I could never have done any of the things that I did afterwards, including my long career in greeting cards, cartoons, and Illustration.
After 40 years, I started dreaming about what I should’ve been doing in graduate school. After two years of those dreams, that wouldn’t stop, I took a beginning class in Ceramics at the Boca Raton Museum of Art School. It re-introduced me to the medium, and I loved having my hands in clay again.
Below, are some of the things I have created after the 40 year hiatus. The pieces I feel the strongest about are the vessels that reflect the ultimate vessel, the womb.
23” H x 10.5” W x 10.5”
This vessel (my favorite) combines 2D line on top of 3D form. It quickly communicates the idea.
22” H x 10” W x 10”
I love the attitude on this piece. The coil bracelets are loose and move.
13″ H x 9.25″ W x 9.25″ D
I created this piece for my son. The roundness of the form mimics pregnancy. I felt full, full, FULL. Eventually, I filled the empty space with umbilical cords. This piece feels both poignant and funny.
These planters incorporate leaf forms I developed using a technique I created back in 1976, right before attending Cranbrook Academy of Art. Currently, I am attaching them to vessel forms.
Initially, Fred was supposed to be a bigger vessel. But, I ran out of time and clay. So, I dashed off Fred.
Sometimes the piece evolves as I make it. This bowl for peas started out as a white platter with squiggles. The border looked a little empty, so I added the balls. The balls reminded me of peas. It struck me that this should be a green bowl for peas. Then, I painted peas underneath the green glaze to make pattern of peas. Problem is, I don’t eat peas all that often.
One of my early creations of female forms in clay in 1978.
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