Coming soon: other series under current exploration
Smoke and Mirrors
Cobbler's Children: Heirloom Domesticware
As a ceramicist with a practice firmly cemented in the functionality of tableware, and an obsessive desire for perfection, those pieces that do not “work out” haunt me. As the nature of someone who generally works alone, with myself as both judge and jury, it becomes easy to obsess over all the minute imperfections of the pieces I make. Some are the result of frustration in the fact that my current skill level does not yet manifest in objects with the desired outcome. Other imperfections are human error, and still others are just the volatile nature of the the medium, with all of the accompanying variables that factor into the practice of ceramics. There are a number of pieces that have begun to clutter the shelves of my studio, reproachfully staring at me.
In an effort to mitigate this self-flagellation, coupled with a desire to mock the current preoccupation in social media that fetishizes the images (real and/or constructed) of an artist’s process (something that I as the maker, am far too often guilty of), I’ve begun to take those “unfortunate mistakes” and preserve them. Too often these foibles have attracted positive feedback, as though the viewer in question thought that they were deliberate works of “art”. These products of my own human error become the body of this series of “perfectly imperfect” pieces. The works are titled with only the most generic of descriptors, but are accompanied with lengthy notes detailing the pragmatics of what went wrong in the process.
An ongoing series of objects and vessels made in collaboration with my mother, Changsoon Oh, an abstract expressionist painter.
(more info to come)
ALMOST AS GOOD AS NEW
An offset of the imperfectly perfect series, this ongoing series consists of pieces that have broken during the final glaze firing of the objects—they’ve almost made it through the process. The vessels are mended, so that the original intention for the piece is clear, and address issues around domestic arts, domesticware, mending, women’s work, family and relationships, values around the new versus the old, and ideas around “perfection.”
These series of work are ongoing, as the nature of a ceramics practice is empirical—with every piece made, every kiln fired, something new is experienced, refined, learned. As a result, although the end results may appear similar, there are minute, critical differences. Each piece tells a story in the arc of the ceramicist’s practice, and together these critical objects form a timeline that is both linear and circuitous.