From a field of 403 entries, I was charged with selecting 70 works for Drink This. The works were diverse, energetic, and personally felt. Thank you to everyone who submitted works for consideration. I regret that I was unable to include more works, as there were about 85 I wanted, but my stern directions said I must put 15 back. I did so reluctantly. The awards were a challenge to select, as there are more accomplished works than awards, and it was often like comparing the energy of a jazz riff to the poetic constraints of haiku, where both were resolved and expressive.
The cup is a favorite form for me. The scale is modest, and the constraints for function a limiting challenge. A good functional cup that speaks to its drinker is a joy. There are also cups that are less functional, but trade off the ease of use for a particular message and attitude, much like trade-off of choosing a delicate, elevated champagne flute over the comfort of a beer stein, or high heels over jogging shoes. When done well, that payback in message is worth the inconveniences. (which may be precisely the point.) There are virtuoso works in both camps here (and many places between) , all making significant communications about the potential for feeling the cup and bringing it up to one’s face, and the place where it lives emotionally and speaks to the viewer/user in the small moments of domestic life.
Cups provide personal tactile, visual, and intellectual experiences, often on a daily basis, and in competition with or as an addition to real daily life.
I admire all the artists who take on the challenges of the cup, and appreciate the ways they create moments of reflection at the ends of our fingers. There is great value in giving yourself the richness of a life examined, even in the personal moments of drinking.
[Especially with a handmade cup…] Drink is the feast of reason and the flow of soul.
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