A field of blooming cotton under a blue sky can be dazzling, even
disorienting as its snowy appearance conjures associations radically at
odds with the dry heat of a summer day. This curious confounding of the
senses is perhaps only fitting, since cotton is enveloped by other,
more troubling, contradictions as well. Fleecy white cotton bolls are
visually and tactically among the most appealing of all natural forms,
and there is little wonder that an artist should find them formally
inspiring. To the eye, what could better exemplify purity?
Daniel Johnston does not blush about his humble beginnings, nor will he turn his back on the historical influences that shaped who he is today. In fact, by way of introduction, he insists on announcing his genealogy in clay. “I have been trained in the Leach, Cardew and Hewitt school of making pots,” his artist statement and our interview begin. Bernard Leach is widely recognized as the grandfather of studio pottery in the United States and Michael Cardew was Leach’s student. From 1997 to 2001, Johnston apprenticed with Mark Hewitt, a student of Cardew’s. As Johnston began to navigate from
these influences toward a voice of his own, an additional triumvirate of geographical influences came together: England, Thailand, and North Carolina.
My favorite aspect of the studio is that it is in the middle of the city hustle. It has good lighting with a view of my succulent collection, the inspiration for much of my work. However, the studio plays only a small part in my creative process. Because the majority of my current work is installation-based, it relies on the process of installing the work in a specific space. In other words, I see my work as being created in a studio without walls.
Tyler’s philosophy emphasizes the investigation and articulation of concepts leading to a high level of personal inquiry, resulting in work that challenges and extends the traditional boundaries of the media and their accepted definitions. Students have access to state of the art facilities and tools while enjoying an interdisciplinary education. The program provides weekly contact… Read More »
Bent tray, 23 in. (58 cm) in length, by David Eichelberger, University of Nebraska-Lincoln. Orb Cluster, 15 in. (38 cm) in height, by Amanda Pless, Arizona State University. Childbearing Hips, 18 in. (46 cm) in height, by Shenny Cruces, San Francisco State University. Set of Shells 1, each approximately 2 in. (5 cm) in diameter,… Read More »
Nebula, 10 in. (25 cm) in height, raku fired, 2009. Cinched, 14 in. (33 cm) in height, wood-fired stoneware, 2009. As a child I spent a lot of my time exploring the woods that were right in my backyard, which is why I have always been drawn to the organic beauty of nature. By looking… Read More »
Layered Archetype B, 17 in. (43 cm) in height, slip cast and thrown porcelain, stoneware, black underglaze, fired to cone 10 in reduction. Porcelain Archetype, 35 in. (89 cm) in height, slip cast, press molded porcelain, fired to cone 10 in reduction. My recent work investigates the interplay between the interior architecture of an object… Read More »
Jewelry box, 4.5 in. (11 cm) in height, soda-fired porcelain. Bowl, 11 in. (28 cm) in diameter, soda-fired porcelain. Over time, traditions adjust to people and their lifestyles. The rate of this change may vary within different cultures. In contrast, nature tends to change slowly and universally. Both of these types of change are meaningful… Read More »
Draped Series Arches, 22 in. (56 cm) in height, low-fire slip, soda fired,2009. Draped Series, Untitled #2, 2 ft. (1.2 m) in length, low-fire slipand cotton batting, 2009. A moment in time can be captured; however, what remains most important is the memory and existence of that instant. My inspirations have been my grandparents, the… Read More »
Failure to Function, 18 in. (46 cm) in height, earthenware, metallic paints, 2009. Transfuse Me, 25 in. (64 cm) in height, stoneware, glaze, glass, metal, fired to cone 05, 2008. As an artist, it is my responsibility to influence the viewer to see not just an object, but an expression of myself when looking at… Read More »