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Objectus brings together three artists rising in the national ceramics community: Chris Dufala, Mitchell Spain and Shalene Valenzuela. Their work invites the viewer to look beyond the familiar everyday object to look for deeper concepts and illusions. Each artist recreates mass produced, often disposable, objects of convenience; constructing them using the unexpected material of clay. Personal commentary is woven into their work through surface decoration and the overall form. Their approach and commentary may be different, but their pieces share flawless technical execution and push the viewer to engage and explore beyond the surface of the common throw-away object.
In The Back Room
May 6 – 21
May 6, 6:00 – 9:00 pm
“I live and make my pots in an area surrounded by nature. I witness its beauty in the spring when new life is born. I see everything burning red and yellow during the fall. When winter comes and I see the world around me going to sleep. Watching these amazing seasonal changes deeply impacts my soul and I sense that nothing stays the same. That is how nature is. That is what Wabi-Sabi is to me. This is exactly what I try to express through my pottery. The beauty of nature in its ever changing state and in my own soul.
From the practical side of pottery, all potters need clay to make pots and we need glazes to cover the surface. There are many different types of clay and glazes and we continually have to worry about their compatibility and performance. In my work I experiment with many different materials and test their compatibilities. I try to use the clay from the area around my studio along with various clays from other areas. I also use shino type glazes for many of my pieces. I have recently been studying techniques used to create pottery of the Momoyama Era, Rikyu pottery, Seto Pottery, and Shino Pottery among others, to try and incorporate them into my future work. My goal is to learn from these older techniques to create unique pottery that totally reflects my own personal nature and contemporary vision.
The pottery pieces that I have brought here for this show were fired in my Wood Fired Kiln. I choose to use a purely natural glaze which is only possible to be obtained by wood firing. I hope these works reveal my soul as a Japanese potter who has a deep appreciation in the ever changing aspects of nature.”
Saturday May 7th, 10:00 a.m.
Kazu has prepared a video and slideshow, to share his many years experience as a potter and woodfire artist. Questions and conversation welcome. Join us and welcome Kazu to Portland.