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Posts Tagged ‘Denver Colorado’

Don Davis – Plinth Gallery Artist Interview

Friday, July 20th, 2012
This month’s Plinth Gallery Artist interview is with Don Davis.
Exhibition Dates:
August 3 – September 29
First Friday August 3
Second Saturday August 11
For more information please visit Plinth Gallery’s website.  Or if your int the area please visit the beautifully designed Plinth Gallery @ 3520 Brighton Blvd, Denver Colorado.
Don Davis’s dedication to clay work is due to an enduring love for the material and the processes of forming and firing it. Most of his work has been wheel thrown porcelain forms although he has pursued many other ceramic techniques. Davis’ early work focused on form, surface treatment and the concepts of duality, indicated by the play between interior and exterior which provided sufficient content. His latest work with terra cotta has become more sculptural and involves content of a more specific yet complex nature. While the natural world and ancient traditions provide the greatest inspiration for him, he allows his work to take its own unique contemporary direction. At its best, that direction is a cooperative effort between the clay, the fire and myself. – Jonathan Kaplan Plinth Gallery
Don sent this interview from Italy!  Grazie e buon divertimento!

For more informatin on Don and his artwork please make the jump to his website.

Don Davis will conduct a 2 day participatory workshop at the Gallery August 4-5.The workshop will demonstrate both wheel thrown and hand built forming methods. Starting with bowl forms and moving on to composite pieces constructed from components formed by various methods. Discussion will focus on clay choices related to form, using wild materials, the importance of improvising, the challenge of throwing thick or thin, relating surface treatments & firing methods to our particular forms, and staying open to new possibilities while exercising personal choices toward your desired results. Ceramic history and cultural influences will be discussed as fundamental inspiration for our own contemporary philosophy and work.  Please call the gallery for more information and to register for this highly instructive workshop. Graduate college credit is available through Adams State College.  303 295-0717
For more informatin please visit the website of Plinth Gallery.

Let’s go back to the very beginning—how did you become a ceramicist?

Fell into it along the way.

Has a significant personal experience shaped your work?
Many
What other clay artist influenced you if any and why?
Chuck Hindes, Norm Schulman, & Jun Kaneko – significant input as teachers.
Where do you find inspiration for your work?
Ancient things.
What are you showing at Plinth Gallery this month? How did you come up with the title for the show?
Showing the tower forms influenced by ancient architecture, omphalos bowl forms, & muse baskets.
If they stuck with the title “transitions”, it references my transition from high temp, Asian influenced ware to my recent work in terra cotta.
Can you tell us a little bit about your book, “Wheel Thrown Ceramics”?
It was a great experience for me.
How do you maintain a healthy work and life balance?
Good food, wine, and keep a garden.
You, like most people enjoy the process of making and didn’t get into it for the sake of “business”. But eventually you found yourself having to make the transition from crafter to a businessperson. What have you learned so far and what advice can you give others in the same situation?
I was a full time studio artist for 22 years; now a university professor. Business (making a living) and the transfer of information (which can also be part of making a living) are both part of the profession.
Tell us about your studio. What do you love most about your studio?
It is comfy and right across the yard from my house.
What advice can you give aspiring artists struggling to find their own voice and look?
Keep an open mind and don’t be in too big of a hurry to “arrive”. Don’t follow trends; pay attention to the ancients!

Marko Fields Plinth Gallery Artist Interview

Tuesday, August 3rd, 2010

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Marko Fields Darwin was Right and Exxon Helped

 Plus, More Cautionary Ceramic Tales of End Times

The work of Marko Fields is an exciting new addition to Plinth Gallery’s exhibition schedule.  His highly narrative vessels reflect his sense of mythology, spirituality, and philosophy.  Using a variety of materials, Fields builds highly patterned and embellished pieces that tell stories which may be socially or politically important. His newest series of figurative works feature the frog as a barometer species, which speaks to our eco-health. Fields’ work explores current themes that are both timely and highly relevant.

Marko’s show opens this Friday August 6, 2010 from 6:00 – 9:00. 

Check out Marko’s webiste: http://markofields.com

Plinth Gallery: http://plinthgallery.com/

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Tell us a little about yourself!

I was born and raised in Wichita, KS, the youngest of four in a fundamentalist Baptist family. I have never been fundamentalist material, so it was a struggle finding my way. I happen to be one-eighth Comanche and a lot Irish (my Mom was ashamed of her own one-quarter Comanche, three-quarter Irish white-trash lineage) so I suppose the dysfunction of my youth logically contributed to my genetic predisposition to addiction. My youth, though not without some achievement and happiness, was mainly misspent. During my childhood I was blessed with a classic studio art education. I suppose I have always drawn, painted, written and played music. In 1976, I dropped-out of college, giving-up on my dream of one day teaching art at the university level. In 1977, heartbroken by a love-of-my-life, I hitchhiked from Wichita to South Florida, never returning for other than visits. After three years in South America, mostly in Bolivia, I returned to the States, if one calls Key West part of the USA. My first five years in KW led to my ultimate bottom, wherein I sought recovery. I spent another 5 years in KW. I met Amy, my wife of 20 years, in KW and she gave me the gift of going back to college to finish my BFA and then get an MFA. Dropping back in to KU in 1991 as a sculpture major, I discovered clay by taking Ceramics 1 and I realized quickly I had found my life’s work.

I’m all better now… Yeah, right. I’ll celebrate 25 years clean on August 9th. Life is actually amazing; I have two kids: Michael (18) and Abby (15). Quite frankly, they are extraordinary. I have to assume that is because of my wife, Amy. I am just grateful that they aren’t doing what I did at their age…

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How did you become an artist?

See above. It’s a long answer and if you really want to know, come to the opening. I can talk faster than I can type.

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How would you describe your style? One of the hardest things for artists to do is to stand apart from everyone else. How long did it take you to come up with your own style and signature look?

My work is very narrative, though that does not describe a visual style. I would say that my work is defined a passion for personal iconography, visual movement, texture, anthropomorphism, animation, gesture, personal mythology, irreverence, the blues, humor and entoptics. If you really want to know about entoptics, come to the opening…

I am told my style is very distinctive. I agree. I’ve always been able to identify my work.

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What is your inspiration for your pieces?

Is this a trick question? There is no single inspiration for my work; it goes piece-by-piece with me.

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What keeps you motivated?

Commitment. I believe that there are things that will only be done if I do them. Of course, this happens to be true for everyone, but a lot of folks don’t know it. I believe in art; it is essential, it is worth doing. Art contributes to the quality of life. It’s THAT important.

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Are you a full-time artist? How do you come up with your creations? Can you walk us through your creative process when dreaming up new pieces?

First, I am full-tilt boogie in the studio probably four months a year, beginning in May. Then I begin my academic and NCECA work cycles from September until the NCECA conference. I do work in my studio nearly every day and I am always thinking about work; I rarely dream about my work. Dreams are where I work on my pathologies. But, I write a lot, and sketch ideas and thoughts. My creative cycle is this: 3% conceptualization, 95% showing-up and 2% magic. Talk to me about this at the opening. Come to the opening. I will answer any question, sometimes with ‘I don’t know.’

There are a lot more questions but let me just say that I believe in what I do. I’m lucky that every aspect of my employment revolves around clay. As I am writing from Mexico, and I’m really tired, I’ll just say: Come to the opening. It will be fun, if nothing else.

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Thanks Marko, I hope you have a wonderful turn out for your reception!!  It looks like it will be an amazing show.