Roxanne Jackson

Roxanne Jackson

Roxanne Jackson is a ceramic artist and mixed-media sculptor living in Brooklyn, NY. Her macabre  works are black-humored investigations of the links between transformation, myth and pop-culture. Press  for her work includes The New York Times, The New Yorker, The LA Times, Juxtapoz Magazine,  Hyperallergic, Forbes, The Huffington Post, Artnet, The Observer, Gothamist, Whitehot Magazine,  Beautiful Decay, Cool Hunting and Ceramics Monthly, among others. She is the recipient of residencies  at Shigaraki Ceramic Cultural Park (Japan), the Bemis Center for Contemporary Arts (NE), Socrates  Sculpture Park (NY), Wassaic Project (NY), PLOP (UK), Watershed Center for Ceramic Arts (ME), the  Ceramic Center of Berlin (Germany), funded by a Jerome Project Grant, and the Pottery Workshop in  Jingdezhen (China), funded by an NCECA fellowship. Jackson has exhibited widely, nationally and  abroad, with recent exhibitions at DUVE Berlin Gallery, (Berlin), Cob Gallery (London), Anonymous  Gallery (Mexico City), Garis and Hahn (LA), Kunstraum Niederösterreich (Vienna), Mathilde  Hatzenberger Gallery (Brussels) and Untitled Art Fair (Miami Beach) with Richard Heller Gallery. She  has recently shown her work in New York City at venues including The Hole, Catinca Tabacaru Gallery,  Ortega y Gasset Projects, Underdonk Gallery, Honey Ramka, Regina Rex, Sardine Gallery and SPRING/ BREAK Art Fair. She looks forward to the upcoming exhibition “Friends and Friends of Friends” at the  Schlossmuseum in Linz, Austria.

 

 

My work blazes a new path to reinvent craft and disrupt historic ceramic sculpture. By approaching  ceramics from many different directions, using a variety of materials and techniques, I exploit this  medium, question conventional notions of beauty and find beauty in the unexpected. I aim to invent a new  mythology by creating uncanny, distorted and psychedelic forms. These metamorphic “mystery objects,”  escape a single unified narrative. They are created through an exploration of form, by sculpting mashup  compositions, extracting traits from both highbrow and lowbrow culture and maneuvering fire and fluxed  glaze. These shapeshifting sculptures evolve and unfurl, revealing gems once hidden. There are collisions  of nature and fantasy, the absurd, the playful, the ironic and the grotesque.  

These sculptures are created by a series of ceramic practices that mimic geology, as clay morphs from a  malleable material into a hard one. The firing process, adding an element of heat, further parallels  metamorphic rock formation. Glaze is applied, melting and crystallizing onto the surface, like igneous  rock. Deviant forms are reinforced by vibrant, lustrous glazes — achieved through layering surfaces and  multiple kiln firings. This sublime relationship between the natural world and ceramics has informed the  imagery of my sculptures. Conglomerate-like animal heads are cut in half to reference a geode. They  transform into something else — like a head that petrifies and crystallizes over time, morphing into a  mineral, a fossil or a pearl. The interiors of these flayed heads are an amalgamation of decorative  elements, geometric shapes and alien-like textures; they seem otherworldly.  

In my series Monster Paws, oversized paws/hands are cutesy and chubby, or creepy and gnarly. These  beastly claws are always adorned, with excessively manicured nails decorated with French tips,  rhinestones, gold luster or glitter. These ostentatious hands hold various items from a crystal shrine to  magic mushrooms, or from a spiny shell to a slimy slug. Mouthwatering details of piece of Nigiri sushi,  or a slice of partially eaten birthday cake (cherry with chocolate frosting), never looked so tawdry and  tempting. And, a once innocent slice of mushroom pizza transmogrifies into the hideous skull of a  melting-zombie-pizza face. Furthermore, I reference this exaggerated decor by making utilitarian objects,  such as candle holders, to further subvert the traditions of the ceramic medium.  

  

“Jackson’s ceramic sculptures of splayed animal heads, swollen hands, and humanoid creatures are  presented on mirrored surfaces that reflect and fold in on themselves. Animal spirits, vampiric features,  and gore are met with absurd compositions and camp gestures. Lurid nightmares come to life through fire  and melted glaze. Visions so grotesque and absurd, they tip the balance from horror into humor. ” Excerpt  from the press release written by Arielle Bier for “Karma” a two person exhibition at Duve Berlin, Berlin,  Germany (September 12 - October 25, 2019)

 

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