I strive to create art that reflects my current circumstances. At a time in my life where the overarching theme is growth, I want to see that in my ceramic practice as well. Focused on challenging myself and intrigued by the spontaneous firing process of raku, I chose this method to facilitate that evolution in my artwork. Demanding and intimidating, raku requires intimate interaction with 1800-degree ceramics, fire, torches, and gas kilns.
Over the course of an hour, my ceramic vessels experience tremendous heat. When the glaze is molten, glowing a brilliant red, I transfer them from the kiln to a can full of shredded newspaper that immediately ignites, a halo of flames is born. Smoke engulfs the work as I seal them, starving the fire from oxygen. Finally at a temperature I can handle, I pull these artworks from the ashes they left behind to discover serendipitous and metallic surfaces.
To work with this process, I had to let go of anxiety and my comfort-zone, to trust in myself. The uncertainty in the survival of my pieces taught patience, the unpredictability in the glazed surface taught appreciation in the spontaneous. The ambition to facilitate the process of raku symbolizes my growth as an artist and as an individual.
Morehead State University - Morehead, Kentucky