My March/April show at Blake Anthony Gallery focused on wheel-thrown ceramics.
I’m new at this clay thang. Many of the pieces are pretty janky: fat bottoms, uneven lips, glazing issues, etc. For each piece, I included a tag detailing my intent when beginning the piece, how that intent changed as reality or inspiration hit, the methods used & the imperfections.
[Photo Credit: Scott Smith]
The following is my accompanying Artist Statement (or whatever):
Ohio winters stay overcast, endlessly gray for a month. Then another. And yet another. In the heaviness beneath those cold clouds, I long for that crisp, Carolina-blue sky of “home”. Thankfully, this year, I found something to ground me, a new tool to keep my depression at bay.
These ceramic works are proof of that.
I’ve wanted to take a pottery class for years. In December, I began a 6-week wheel-throwing course @ the Mansfield Art Center. I was instantly hooked. I took my instructor, Jack, up on her offer to use the studio outside of class time. I checked out pottery books from the library & further researched all things clay by binge-watching days of instructional videos on YouTube. Once my class officially ended, I continued learning & exploring through the Art Center’s Independent Study program. (25 more pounds of stoneware clay are waiting for me right now.)
Wheel-throwing is akin to drawing in thin air. Creating something in the space where once there was nothing. It’s not easy. The spinning lump of earth holds memory of its original shape. Clay wants to remain tight & closed. It tries to hang on to what it’s been. But as I find our shared rhythm, thin & coax up the walls, give my vision life, both the clay & myself open in tandem.
Creating a vessel—thrilling & challenging—is only the beginning. Next come the other possibilities: altering the form, adding & taking away, carving, underglazing, sgraffito, wax resist, glazing, multiple firings. Experimentation galore. I get to be potter, scientist & artist.
Patience is required between the stages. Each delay carries hope, an expectancy of what’s to come. There’s a tangible momentum, a cycle leading to completion, the perfect timing required to execute the next step, which tugs me forward all the way through the winter, into bluer skies.
I’ve barely begun the infinite exploration clay offers. I’m in it for life.
These pieces were born in winter. I’m excited to see what springtime’s breezes, sunshine & blue skies birth. To anyone purchasing my art, thank you, earnestly. Your patronage allows me to create, explore & discover what other beautiful things the clay & I can draw in thin air together.
~Lucas Hargis, March/April 2019, Blake Anthony Gallery
A half dozen of these have sold. Sweet. I’ve earned back the cost of the class, which means I can keep experimenting!
If you’re interested in price, size or process for any piece, let me know.