Rain Harris

Rain Harris is a sculptor and installation artist who who lives in Kansas City.  She  received her Bachelor’s degree from Rhode Island School of Design and her MFA from The Ohio University. She has participated in residencies at the Clay Studio, Philadelphia PA; Watershed Center for the Ceramic Arts, Newcastle, ME; The Pottery Workshop, Jingdezhen, China; The International Ceramic Research Center, Guldageraard, Denmark;  and The Fabric Workshop and Museum, Philadelphia, PA.  Her work has been exhibited in numerous group exhibitions including at the US Chamber of Commerce, The Ferrin Gallery, and the Garth Clark Gallery. She had a 3-person show at the Wexner Center in Columbus, Ohio and she has had solo shows at the Philadelphia International Airport, The Portland Craft Museum, The Duane Reed Gallery, and Sherry Leedy Contemporary.  Rain has presented many lectures at colleges, museums, and conferences.  She has received many grants and fellowships including an American Craft Council Emerging Artist Grant, an Independence Foundation Fellowship, three Pennsylvania Council on the Arts Special Opportunity Stipends, a Leeway Foundation Achievement Grant, and two Window of Opportunity Grants. Her work is in private collections and over a dozen national and international museums.

My handbuilt flowers allude to nature and growth patterns but they do not strive for specificity, rather they are stylized landscapes or still lifes that question artificiality and preciousness. I reference acts of nature such as ice storms through the use of industrial materials like silk flowers covered in resin, juxtaposing the organic with the synthetic. My representation of untamed nature is pure simulacrum and simultaneously questions the notions of permanence and sprawl.

Many of the works are made from black clay, visually contrasting the stark white porcelain, while bringing up associations with Victorian sentiments revolving around morbidity and excess. There is also a wink and a nod to collections such as Wunderkammers or Cabinets of Curiosities as well as the Blaschka Flowers along with a myriad of other embedded sources. This confluence of tangible ideas, materials, and cultural perceptions creates visual hybridity, which allows the viewer to bring in their own associations and interpretations into the works’ meaning.

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