Archive for June, 2011


Making of “Hunting Aliens”

The following series of photographs were taken as I was building the piece “Hunting Aliens”. The work is printed metal and brads on a birch panel; size is 24″x32″x1″. Thanks for your interest!

The idea for "Hunting Aliens" was sparked by the image of a duck hunter on a metal sign that I picked up at a flea market.

Using a Sharpie, I made a rough sketch of the layout directly on the panel. The automobile and the flying saucers were the first shapes I cut. I moved them around on the panel to get a feel for the look I wanted.

Chris and I had recently been in Sedona, AZ, and that landscape stuck in my head. A huge contrast to our WV hills. I cut out "Sedona-like" rock formations for my landscape.

Cutting out the hunter for his new environment.

Playing with the main shapes of the composition.

Deciding on the mid-ground portion of the landscape, which would be green foilage.

Foliage in place, and begining to create the foreground.

Continuing the foreground, plus I created a shadow for the automobile.

Ground work done, I begin to work on the sky.

Closing in the sky portion of the composition.Introducing the first alien and saucer.

Additional saucers are now in place and this piece is close to completion.

As a finishing touch I add the gunfire, and finish nailing any lose pieces.

"Hunting Aliens" completed!


Ceramic Research Center: part two

Me, standing next to Dango, by Jun Kaneko.

As promised, here are some pics I took at the ASU Ceramic Research Center. Enjoy!

What a great piece! Hard to Swallow, by Sean Henry; glazed stoneware.

Cube Skull Teapot, by Richard Notkin; stoneware.

More fabulous work!

Spook, by Max Lehman; glazed ceramic.

The Couple, by Georges Jeancios; terracotta.

Sleeper, by Tanya Bahura; earthenware, acrylic paint.

Center: Untitled Jar, by Michael & Magdalena Frimkess; glazed stoneware.

I hope you were inspired by seeing some of the works from the CRC collection. Although my own work is in assemblage and mixed-media, I could not help but be invigorated and motivated to make art after Chris and I saw this great collection! According to Peter Held, curator of the CRC, only about one third of the collection is on display. All I could say to that is “Wow!”.


The Ceramic Research Center/ part one

In May, Chris and I spent nine days in Arizona visiting my son, Jeremy, and daughter-in-law, Stacy. We had a wonderful visit, spending the first few days hiking in Phoenix, Sedona, and the Grand Canyon. During the weekdays, while Jeremy and Stacy were at work, Chris and I spent some time checking out some of the art in Phoenix.

On one of our day trips we visited the Art Museum at Arizona State University. Unfortunately, two of the museum’s three galleries were closed due to exhibitions being changed. However, across the street from the museum is The Ceramic Reasearch Center, and it more than made up for our disappointment regrading the closed galleries.

This rather drab building gives no clue as to the wonderful works exhibited inside.

The ASU Art Museum was one of a few fine art museums to consciously undertake the building of a contemporary studio ceramics collection at a time when craft-based media was relegated as a decorative or minor art form. From its inception, the collection was displayed in open storage. This concept allows year-round access to a majority of our permanent collection, providing students, scholars and the general public an opportunity to view important works.

Every year, the CRC features three to five exhibitions on important movements and artists who have made significant contributions in the ceramics field. The holdings demonstrate the full range of technique, aesthetic approaches and possibilities within the medium. Major artists represented in the collection include Rudy Autio, Hans Coper, Ruth Duckworth, Shoji Hamada, Karen Karnes, Bernard Leach, Maria Martinez, Otto and Gertrud Natzler, Lucie Rie, Edwin and Mary Scheier, Angus Suttie, Akio Takamori, Peter Voulkos, Kurt Weiser and Betty Woodman, to name a few.

Here are just some of the works that Chris and I viewed at the CRC.

As we walked through the door, we were greeted by the work of Robert Arneson.

Just a part of the collection on exhibit. The Pollack portrait is also by Arneson.

I love the scale, color, and energy of Viola Frey. Her retrospective at the MAD Museum last year was mind-blowing!

Untitled Sculpture by Judy Moonelis. This glazed stoneware piece stands four feet tall.

This is only ONE wall!

Untitled Podlike Form, by Graham Marks. 32"x33"x29", glazed stoneware.

After Dark, by Verne Funk; whiteware, stains.

Chris with yet another wall of great clay art!

Another piece by Arneson, one of his self-portraits for which he was well known.

My first encounter with Arneson’s work was at the Hirshhorn Museum, in DC, about ten years ago. I have been a fan ever since. Below is the pedestal for the piece above. I also think that a friend, Charleston, WV artist Mark Tobin Moore , resembles Arneson big time!


Trojan Frog, by David Gilhooly; glazed stoneware.

Vessel with Lid, Michael Gross; terracotta, engobes. This rascal stands two feet high and chock-full of fun imagery!

So this is just a taste of the CRC! I plan to post some pics in the next few days.