Laughing In Clay

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03/01/2021 - 01/04/2022

NCECA 2021 Online Exhibition! View exhibition here.

Laughing in Clay

Humor is the sweet to the sour of the sweet and sour chicken of life.
Humor is the spoon full of sugar that Mary Poppins tells us helps the medicine go down. It is a means of conveying that which is difficult in a manner that is more approachable or easily digestible. Humor is often overlooked as lowbrow or unintellectual and easily dismissed without being seen for its truly unique ability to convey content. The amount of humor being used in contemporary ceramics is undoubtedly a response to this time of uncertainty and this political climate. This exhibition will prove that humor is Multi(VA)lent in its ability to connect with viewers about a wide range of topics. By confronting viewers with a variety of artists using humor in their practice, this exhibition will challenge viewers to examine the different reasons artists choose to include humor in their work

The artists chosen for this exhibition use the ceramic medium in various capacities to convey themes or content that can be difficult to talk about, whether it is too controversial, taboo, or too complex, such as alcoholism, class issues, or pollution. For example, Travis Winters makes exaggerated caricatures in bizarre situations that highlight excess and absurdity. Andrew Adamson who uses one-line jokes to point at class issues in American culture. Hannah Pierce sarcastically pairs dismal scenes with pops of color, playful perspectives, figure distortion and an abundance of childlike references. Artists who range from emerging to mid-career explore these ideas through witty narrative, unexpected imagery, and clever aesthetic styles.

By providing a broad sampling of approaches to humor, this exhibition will highlight the complexity of the science behind comedy, while making people laugh in the process. NCECA conference attendees will walk away with a better understanding of the variety of ways in which humor can be used in a work, and how it may affect the content of the work. In the 10 years I have been a member of NCECA I cant recall an exhibition completely dedicated to humor. This exhibition will add a touch of lightness to NCECA Richmond, and to the broader ceramics field as a whole.

Organizer/participating artist: RJ Sturgess

Participating Artists:

Stuart Asprey
Ashley Bevington
Andrew Adamson
Rachel Ballard
Tommy Frank
Travis Winters
Brett Kern
TJ Erdahl
Hannah Pierce