The collection of contemporary Japanese ceramics, displayed in the Everson Museum of Art (lower level) is a breathtaking representation of experimentation and whimsy in clay.
The beautiful thing about this exhibition, as with the previous one in this space, is the circle of trust – trust that visitors will not touch; trust that nothing will break. Some pieces are behind glass, like caged animals and others roam free on mirrored and lighted shelves, allowing patrons to appreciate the details up-close-and-personal-like.
It is incredibly inspiring to view the concepts unfolding within decades, the mastery of cut, shape, form and glaze application.
For many years, the Everson Museum of Art was known for its ceramics collection, the largest in the nation. Now they are going forward with American art, I think, although maybe that is just with regard to the upstairs holdings.
The Erie Canal Museum (318 Erie Blvd. East, Syracuse, New York 13202) is host to a ceramics exhibition, one installed in February 2020. The museum is currently closed due to the world-wide health crisis – that makes interacting with the clay vessels (created as site-specific art) nearly impossible.
This is an irony because the idea behind the work envelopes the scope of human life, as it interacts with the forces of nature, the forces of water and the history of the man-made canal. The humans in question are every socio-economic level of local and regional society. All races of people who, in some way, have interacted with, associated with or had some understanding of what the Erie Canal has meant in our history, as well as those who have no idea but in fact, have been, inadvertently, affected by the legendary waterway.
Artist Linda Zhang was the 2017-2018 Boghosian Fellow in the School of Architecture at Syracuse University. She came to Syracuse from Europe and knowing no one, she spent time meditating (think deep thought) on designing the curriculum for this relatively new fellowship. She proceeded to think about and create strategies for the design of her position, ideas that would ultimately catapult her educational journey to include making art and teaching electives at the college, which led to philosophical-infused artwork and the idea of making meaning in terms of one’s personal vortex. This path included an interdisciplinary union with Errol Willet, Associate Professor of Art (ceramics) and Biko Mandela Gray, Assistant Professor of American Religion.
Although Zhang is currently a professor at Ryerson University in Toronto, The Story of Water pairs the artist with her SU educational cohorts. The clay vessels in this exhibition were slip cast and formatted utilizing water from the canal. There is a transformation – water crafts and the art is manipulated to create a phenomenological transcendence – art as symbolism.
Taking an idea and moving it through time, so that the result is present while encompassing a larger whole – this is incredibly interesting on so many levels. Fortunately for all, nothing is truly impossible. This exhibition can be viewed remotely. Zhang will be offering a lecture on her process via an on-line Zoom meeting. This event takes place on Saturday, April 18, 2020 at 1:00 PM. Click on the link above to join the party or check out the same link by way of the event’s Facebook page.
The event is free, however; donations to the museum are welcome. <3
*from the Erie Canal Museum web-site
February 3-April 16, 2020:The Story of Water: The Erie Canal as a Site of Untold Stories
“The Story of Water” is a collaborative project between Linda Zhang, Assistant Professor of Architecture at Ryerson University, and Biko Gray, Assistant Professor of Religion at Syracuse University. This exhibit features clay vessels based on 3-D drone scans of Erie Canal structures, transformed by the introduction of Canal water before the firing process. The resulting clay models symbolize the transformative effects, positive and negative, that the Erie Canal had on the lives of those who built it, used it, and lived near it.
Zhang will discuss the artwork, her creative process, and what inspired her and collaborator Biko Gray to develop this exhibit. “The Story of Water” features clay vessels based on 3-D drone scans of Erie Canal structures in Central New York. The artist introduced Canal water to the pieces before the firing process, creating models that symbolize the transformative character of water and the Erie Canal.
The Museum is currently closed to the public to protect visitors, volunteers, and staff from Covid-19. We’re working diligently to serve you by offering programs by alternative means, and greatly appreciate your help. You can make a donation to the Museum through the link in the “Get Tickets” box below,
We look forward to seeing you on April 18 for this thought-provoking talk!
Two of my classes used hand-building skills to create these adorable clay lizards. We used the Sax Colorburst glazes. I love the colors, especially the Firecracker!!! The projects remain in the glass case in the Chittenango Middle School atrium.
We looked at the work of the Aboriginals of Australia for inspiration. Different patterns were added to the body, head, limbs and tail using a variety of techniques.
My B-day Art-8 students (Chittenango Middle School) created these clay masks. We used Sax Colorburst glazes. They have silica flakes that pop in the kiln creating confetti-like effects.
I offered students thirteen different colors and asked that they use at least six, making sure to place three coats of glaze on the mask for each color. It was tricky because the glazes transform in the kiln – there is that allowance for serendipity that doesn’t work if you are a control freak, but totally does if you are experimental.
I added a wire to the back so they can hang on the wall. Students took them home today. I miss them already!
Syracuse artists Jacqueline Adamo, Lauren Bristol, Dana Stenson and Tom Huff have joined forces to produce a contemporary spin on texture for the new art exhibit at Edgewood Art Gallery and Custom Frame Shop (216 Tecumseh Road, Syracuse, New York 13224).
These four talented people – I am always running into them in town – I saw Jackie at the Yoko Ono exhibit at the Everson Museum of Art; I see Lauren every now and then while hiking at Green Lakes; ran into Dana last week at Target and Tom at the Regional Flea Market. But, weirdly enough, I missed the opportunity to see them all in one place at the same time at the art reception for their show, which was Friday night.
The exhibit is called Creative Thread. I popped in on Saturday to check it out. Edgewood is a small gallery, about the size of my living room, but owner Cheryl Chappell has a great eye and a way with space. Each show brings a fresh perspective and Cheryl does a magnificent job curating – pairing larger pieces with smaller ones and allowing all to shine. She is also a preeminent framer.
Jackie Adamo has created all new pieces incorporating fabric and sewing techniques into her oil paintings. Lauren designs her own patterns in these wonderful crochet wall hangings in addition to displaying several diminutive fiber art narratives. Dana is a metalsmith and has produced some mixed-media art pieces, as well as jewelry for this show. And Tom has chipped in with his reductive soapstone sculptures.
David MacDonald’s ceramics are still for sale too!
This exhibit continues through November 15, 2019.
The shop is open Tuesday-Friday 9:30-6:00 PM and Saturday 10:00 AM-2:00 PM. For more information call (3150 445-8111).
While the Everson Museum of Art is celebrating fifty years in the biz with all sorts of amazing events throughout the year, the AmeriCU Syracuse Arts & Crafts Festival is clocking forty-nine. The fest is located on and around Columbus Circle in downtown Syracuse, New York with lots of artwork, jewelry, accessories and functional pottery. And musical performances, food trucks (Carvel Ice Cream!) and even a vagabond stilt walker or two. The first two days are clocked out but you can stroll the event tomorrow from 10am – 5pm.
I found Peter Valenti and his wife in their prime location right on the circle. Peter is a retired public school art teacher (East Syracuse-Minoa) who has always been a working artist. He is a member of the Independent Potters’ Association (IPA) and one of the premiere ceramists in the area. If you don’t collect his work, you should.
Valenti creates the slabs then bisque fires them. His fabulous glazing effects are by way of raku firing. The colors and patterning (dragonflies, ginko leaf) lend themselves well with Arts & Crafts style and yet, they have a modern flavor and would compliment any home décor. <3
For more information, contact the artist at email@example.com.
His vision is one that reflects a heritage in which landscape and religion play vital roles. He is from New Mexico, although his art education took him to Ohio and New York, which is why we are able to fall under his spell here in Syracuse, New York. This show was curated by the Columbus Museum of Art and will be on exhibit until Sunday, July 28, 2019.
Dominguez combines ceramics and found objects to create his irreverent world. It is a playful, fantastical and thoroughly original body of work. <3
The youngest of eight children, Eddie Dominguez grew up in Tucumcari, New Mexico, between Albuquerque and Amarillo on historic Route 66. He came to national prominence in the mid–1980s for highly stylized dinnerware sets that also stack into sculptural forms. In his work, Dominguez frequently references his home state’s vegetation, landforms, weather, and Hispano–Catholic culture. The dual nature of Dominguez’s objects, which inhabit the gray area between utility and art for art’s sake, reflects his personal experience as a New Mexican who studied ceramics in the Anglo–dominated East: whether we see “art” or “craft,” local Hispano or melting pot American depends completely on the immediate context.
The Everson Museum of Art is located at 401 Harrison Street, Syracuse, New York, 13202. Call (315) 474-6064 for more information.
Gratitude is in abundance in November. It is in the air we are breathing here in Syracuse, New York The cold air that is making its journey across the ocean as I write this, which may actually bring with it a snow day or at least a two-hour delay on Monday (according to my meteorologist friend), is actually clearing our sinuses of the allergens from last season with every breath we take.
We are grateful for the freedom from headaches and nausea associated with said allergies, lol. By we I mean specifically me, but I assure you, there are many who share the same sentiments.
With Thanksgiving fast approaching, we (again me, lol) are all more keen to bring conscious awareness to our love and appreciation for our lives – our families and the pets we love, our friendships both near and far, and all of the things we love (yes! like art!).
I hosted a dinner party last night along with my friend Bobbi Rock Petrocci – Friendsgiving 2017, our 3rd annual and the biggest to date with thirty people dining together in the private room at Grover’s Table in Fayetteville, New York. It was a blessed evening. I just feel so overwhelmed with gratitude and love for these amazing people.
Last week, I met Bobbi at the Half Moon Bakery & Bistro in Jamesville, New York to assist her in installing her latest exhibition of Christian Brothers Academy student artwork. I did very little. She is an epic installer, equipped with level, hammer, tiny nails and the perfect plan to display these very special diminutive plates. I just provided the oh-that-looks-so-goods, and was the first to make a purchase.
They were made by CBA art club students in grades 7 – 12 for the purpose of fundraising for Hope for the Bereaved, a grief counseling group. These dishes are infused with color and spiritual messages, and/or delicate imagery meant to allow the flow of positive energy to encompass the viewer and subsequent owner. They are priced at $10 each. You put your money in a jar on the counter and write your name on the accompanying master grid to secure the one you want. A butterfly sticker is then placed under the purchased piece until November 30, 2017 when the show comes down and all the artwork are released to their respective new owners/homes.
These dishes epitomize kindness, the idea that we help each other heal; that children are just as capable as adults are to feel, express and share the positive vibe of love. Each piece is unique. I am sure that you will find one that speaks to you.
And while there, give thanks to amazing proprietor Debbe Titus who has been busily creating, crafting and baking pies to sell for Thanksgiving, as well as offering daily specials of breakfast and lunch – soups, salads and sandwiches that are very, very yummy – and of course, desserts like half moon cookies and pumpkin bread, cupcakes and all things deliciously amazing! So grateful! <3
My clay lesson this semester was the fish sculpture. I decided to do it with every class. My 5th grade, the 8th grade art students and the 8th grade Studio in Art students. It is such a great lesson because everyone starts with the same amount of clay creating a slab first that rolls up then adding the hand built elements.
They are all so beautifully unique! I decided to have a fishing derby. I weighed and measured every fish. Each class had a winner. The prize was a small bag of Swedish Fish, lol. Abraham’s was the biggest fish. He won a giant bag of Swedish Fish! So fun!
My new favorite place: the Half Moon Bakery & Bistro! It is located at 6500 East Seneca Turnpike, Jamesville, NY (13078).
Cozy…and delicious! The cupcakes are perfection. This place reminds me of every Wayne Thiebaud painting I have ever seen. Proprietor Debbe Titus prepared amazing quiche and salad (and iced coffee!!!) for my friend Bobbi Rock Petrocci, art teacher at Christian Brothers Academy, Dewitt, NY, and me last week when we visited to discuss our upcoming art exhibitions. Mine will be during the month of October 2016. We installed Bobbi’s show this morning.
Bobbi’s former student Beth L. helped too – a recent graduate who will be attending college in Albany this fall. We used the technique I call measuring! Lol – math and art are like two fingers crossed, as are art and every other subject in school. There was a lot of measuring here – to make sure the shelving was of unified height and the same distance apart and to insure the shelves were level. This part took the longest but once the structure was in place, everything made sense and the pieces fit beautifully. It is the first ceramics show in the bakery!
It was really incredible watching Bobbi work out how to decorate this space. It was as if her vision was coming alive before our eyes. She used the small shelves to exhibit her own work alongside student work created during CBA’s Sizzling Summer Ceramics Camp.
Students created these pieces during the intensive one-week event. The work will be on display through the month of August 2016.
For more information regarding this exhibition and the bakery including hours of operation, contact the owner at 315-492-0110 or check out the website – www.thehalfmoonbakery.com
More information to come regarding my show including a plan to have a little gathering/reception, maybe on a Sunday afternoon. I will be showing a dozen paintings. Super excited! <3 And Bobbi Rock Petrocci will be back in November 2016 with a new crop of CBA student ceramic art! 🙂