There are many ways to approach art making with clay. I follow a reductive modernist format in concept and adhere to traditional ceramic traditions in making vessels and works for the wall. There are four elements running through my work: formal composition, abstraction, minimalism and attention to the natural world.
The study of early 20th architecture and design of international modernists contribute to my modernist attitude about form. I have always been interested in a pared down aesthetic and admire Sol Le Witt and Agnes Martin for their freedom within restraint and refer to 19th century Japanese design for direction in the abstraction of natural forms. European ceramists Gertrude and Otto Natzler , Lucie Rie and Hans Coper were my earliest clay heros discovered while in Europe during the 70’s.
The essence of my ceramic work is restrained minimal form, activated by surface treatment. I aim for a balance between restraint and spontaneity in both form and surface. This is fitting practice for clay which presents many surprises and challenges within technique even for the seasoned artist.
I employ a reductive approach to formal composition and embrace my relationship with the material. Recently I began to allow the clay to speak more freely and to surrender to rather than control the process more often. I admire the sculpture of Richard Serra and Martin Puryear which express both soft and rigid aspects of a material in understated bold forms.
I look at abstract painting with intelligent complex color to inform my surface treatments, as I translate them to fired ceramic. Albers rich muted palette that of Rothko and works of various contemporary painters, among them Robert Kushner, Suzan Frecon, and Sean Scully .
Control and chance now play a larger role in my process. This shift marks a new direction. I have begun to embrace the wonder of the unexpected .