Hometown: Philadelphia, PA
Current town: Philadelphia, PA
Job description: Kiln Technician/ Art Teacher
Bio: Following my undergraduate studies at The University of the Arts, I have been learning more and more about the complexities of the ceramic process. Meticulously refining the precision of my craft through glaze experimentation and alternative firing processes, I have found a peculiar place in the world of art where I strives to find balance between creations of personal sculpture from my innermost thoughts and personal struggles, with an aesthetically pleasing design for the fine craft enthusiast.
Describe your work. What materials do you work with? I primarily work with ceramics. I occasionally incorporate found objects, rocks, and minerals.
What are you currently working on? I started a series of sculptures about a year ago and have been constantly displaying them in a variety of settings. Its an ongoing series that I an constantly adding to while I try and take my art further by pushing my limits with size, structure, and movement.
What’s your art background / when did you begin really focusing on art? I’ve always been making art. In my younger years I was more of a 2 dimensional artist doing mostly painting, and printmaking. During my time at UArts in Philly I came to the realization that I could express myself much better through making 3 dimensional art.
What’s been happening in your life/ what’s next for you? I recently became the owner of a warehouse that I am using as my art studio and will hopefully in the not-too-distant future be my home as well as a gallery space. Its a big project that I have very little experience in so it will certainly be a learning experience.
Describe your current state of mind / what’s inspiring you? I’ve always been one to enjoy and appreciate the simple pleasures in life. I find the phenomenons that occurs in nature to be my biggest inspiration.
Do you have any exhibits coming up/ past exhibits you’d like to mention? My work is currently on display at Steel City Coffee House in Phoenixville. It will be up until the end of April.
Is any of your work political? Nope. And I’d prefer it stay that way.
What is one of the biggest challenges you face as an artist? For me, the material is the biggest challenge. There are so many steps in my process from starting with a chunk of clay and transforming it into a piece of art. It can easily become a mechanical and mindless process.
Are you involved with any organizations/ do you collaborate with other artists? I share a studio with Lindsey Gilbert, who is a great local glass artist. We always talk about collaborating on some things, but mostly we just kick ideas around. I also do a lot of craft events with Morgan Jamison, who has a jewelry company called Old Blood. She has really helped me find balance between creating things for myself and creating things for the craft consumer. Making art is self indulgent, and it doesn’t come naturally for me to create things for other people.
What are you listening to these days? I’ve been listening to a lot of On The Water; an awesome foot-stompin folk collective from West Philly.
What are a few of your favorite spots in Philly? I’m a big fan of West Philly where I live. The neighborhood is going through somewhat of a cultural renaissance. One of my favorite places is Fiume. A small speak easy above an Ethiopian resturant. Its a dingy dive that has great music a few nights a week. Also the Tiberino Museum is one of West Philly’s hidden gems.
Favorite artists and why/ people in your field whom you most admire: My favorite well known artist is Andy Goldsworthy. I just love the way he creates things that capture that exact moment. I think that truly portrays the natural phenomenon that I strive for in my work.
What are you reading? The areas of my expertise. By John Hodgman
Favorite authors, fiction: Hunter S. Thompson
Favorite authors, nonfiction: Greg Palast
What was the first piece of artwork you bought/ do you buy a lot of artwork? I bought a teapot of a Blackwater Soldier holding a machine gun. It came with a cup that is an Iraq civilian. The teapot was made by Alex Irvine. A clay artist from Asheville, NC and one of my favorite ceramics artists and a close friend of mine.