I am Hannah Pierce
My work consists of surreal, narrative-driven sculptures that primarily portray bizarre characters and imagery from urban environments. Within my playful, architectural configurations, I utilize deceptive, illustrative qualities and exaggerative forms to distort the viewer’s perspective and enhance the theatrical nature of these narrative works.
These uncanny structures are usually accompanied by references to smog, unknown fluids and other depictions of urban detritus. I tend to use visual metaphors that recognize our dependency upon man-made environments and our desperate attempts to conform to living in intense, industrialized areas. Within all my sculptures, the figures are visually separate from their surroundings in their illustrative, 2-dimensional format. This separation personifies an underlying tension and a sense of estrangement that everyone in our contemporary society can relate to. My unique approach to 3-dimensional storytelling reveals subtle undertones of historical influences, such as German expressionism, Indonesian shadow puppets and early 1900’s animations utilizing paper cutouts.
In being most heavily influenced by Pop Surrealism, I sarcastically pair dismal scenes with pleasurable pops of color, playful perspectives, figure distortion and an abundance of childlike references. In my most recent works, there is an obvious focus on addictions and habits, with an emphasis on oral fixations. Although these are adult issues, I draw attention to childlike qualities when pertaining to concepts of excess, lack of self-control and escapism. Within these works, I can bring a sense of humor and absurdity to some of the darker, more challenging aspects of being human in our unstable, perpetually changing environments.
Hannah Pierce is a ceramic sculptor and mixed media artist. She received her MFA in Ceramics from Edinboro University of PA and her BA in Studio Art at Humboldt State University of CA. Before graduate school, Hannah worked as an educator for people with developmental disabilities at The Studio and Cheri Blackerby Gallery, located in Eureka, California. Within Hannah’s work, her background in illustration, painting, and printmaking has allowed her to incorporate experimental surfaces and an abundance of loaded imagery. She has exhibited her work nationally in exhibitions such as The Clay Studio National, The Clay Studio’s Graduate Student Biennial, the 50th and the 52nd Annual NCECA National Student Juried Exhibition, and the Workhouse Arts Center’s 6th Annual Workhouse Clay International where she received the award, “Best of Show”. She was also awarded a Full Kiln God scholarship as a resident at Watershed Center for Ceramic Arts. She is currently the Abilities Fellowship Artist at Baltimore Clayworks, where her focus is teaching overlooked communities and helping to expand the community arts programming, while rigorously continuing her studio practice and exhibiting new work.
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