September 1 - October 23, 2015
Opening Reception: 5-7pm Friday, September 11
2015 Award Winners are as follows:
Best of Show
"The American Dream - Oh Darling! It's Too Distracting" Photography - Bin Feng, Savannah, Georgia
"First and Ten; Do It Again" Sarah Bielski, Statesboro, Georgia
"Mistaken for Another - Seek Consultation" Ian Shelly, Macomb, Illinois
"A Safe Place" Emily Bennett, Terre Haute, Indiana
Works of Paper
"Apocrypha File: Divine Guidance" Timothy Massey, Spencerport, New York
"The Suburbs" Brennan Probst, Wilmette, Illinois
"Factory Flask" Eleanor Heimbaugh, Hays, Kansas
Thank you to our award sponsors: Blick Art Materials, Harlow & Lila Blum, Grant & Emily Minor, OSF Holy Family Medical Center, Twomey Foundation, and an Anonymous Sponsor.
Frank Saliani Curatorial Statement:
There is, in the Hindu faith, the idea of Vishnu’s 64 Arts or Kalas. The 64 arts include just about every aspect of human expression: manual dexterity, crafting wooden furniture, splashing water, and hairdressing are all included in the 64 Arts.
Conspicuously missing is pottery.
This could be because potters enjoy next to no status in the caste system, or it could simply be an oversight in traditional Hindu culture. After all, mosaics are included. A broad reading of the 64 Arts might allow that pottery, arguably one of the most ancient and utilitarian forms of human expression, was intended to be included under the broader rubric of “mosaics”. On the other hand, given the level of detail devoted to delineating each specific iteration of each specific art form (spinning v. needlework v. playing with thread), one might assume not.
It is a delightful coincidence that this exhibition, which takes it’s name from The Buchanan Center for the Arts’ address at 64 Public Square, is being curated by me: a ceramic artist and potter. Still, coincidences can sometimes show us the world in a different light. Like the 64 Kalas, I have a broad definition of art. However, unlike the 64 Kalas, I feel uncomfortable with the idea proscribing any finite set of expressions and deeming them worthy of the label “Art".
And for this reason, I would much rather think of my role as that of a curator—rather than that of a juror—bringing together a collection of work that has relevance not only as a group, but to the greater culture we live in today. The works I have chosen all possess some transcendent spark or presentness that sets them apart. They possess an originality and authenticity in execution, inspiration, material, technique or subject matter. Multiple works by an individual were favored over individual works, and works of individual artists that maintained a dialogue with other works were chosen as a part of that conversation. In this way, I hope that I have assembled a group of works that speaks of our society today—neither simply good nor bad, right nor wrong, but authentic and original in voice and message.
Frank Saliani is a ceramic artist living and working in Brooklyn, New York. Central to his work is an exploration of the principle that the whole is greater than the sum of its parts. His sculptural pieces and functional objects highlight the connection between the larger themes, patterns, and ideas that make up our lives, and the smaller objects, moments, and actions that merge to create them.
Mr. Saliani studied ceramics at Syracuse University and received an MFA from Ohio University. He has been an artist in residence at a number of nationally recognized centers for the arts, including the Arrowmont School for Arts and Crafts, the Carbondale Clay Center, and the Red Lodge Clay Center. He has exhibited his work internationally and has been featured in a number of publications, including Ceramics Monthly and The Spirit of Ceramic Design. 20thavenuestudios.com