Richard Notkin Workshop
Ceramic Art / Sculptural Teapots: A Plethora of Innovative Techniques - 2008
Over the past 40 years, Richard Notkin has established a reputation as an artist who follows his own passions, and not the prevailing winds of doctrine. This intensive, fast-paced three-day workshop will cover the diverse technical and aesthetic approaches which Notkin uses to create his unique works in clay. Throughout the workshop, Notkin will discuss various aesthetic considerations, including: format and compositional devices, alteration and metamorphosis of form and imagery, choice of scale, creating a narrative, etc.
The first day of the workshop will consist of several hands-on sessions, and will provide the students with unique working experiences, challenging each to explore clay in unusual and unexpected ways. Day one class size 18. All levels welcome.
The second and third days will mostly consist of various demonstrations and slide lectures by Richard, covering a wide range of aesthetic and technical information, including: handbuilding, small- and large-scale carving, surface textures and detailing, clay body alterations through the addition of non-ceramic materials, clay layering techniques, plaster mold-making, slip-casting and press-molding, and more. By encouraging participants to think beyond the traditional parameters of the standard pottery studio, this workshop is designed to expand the aesthetic and technical horizons for beginning through advanced students, as well as the professional ceramist. Day two class size 35. All levels welcome.
Participants may register for Day One hands on for $135, Days 2-3 demonstration for $135, or the full workshop for $270.
Free to the public
May 16, 2008
10:00 am - 5:00 pm
May 17-18, 2008
10:00 am - 5:00 pm
Richard Notkin Bio
Notkin, Richard (b. 1948, Chicago, IL, lives in Helena, MT). A full-time studio artist in Helena, MT, Notkin's teapots, ceramic sculptures and tile murals are visual explorations into social and political commentary. Through the 1960's, 70's and 80's, when large scale abstract expressionist vessels and gestural ceramic sculptures were the rage in contemporary American ceramics, Notkin worked with a tightly controlled, high degree of craftsmanship, creating works which were often criticized as being too small, tight and precious. He took this as a compliment. He is perhaps most known for his series of unglazed stoneware teapots, inspired by the remarkable Yixing wares of China (circa 1500 AD to the present), but consciously maintaining a separate cultural identity, "reflecting the current dilemmas of our contemporary human civilization".
For over three and a half decades, his work has been exhibited internationally, and is in numerous public and private collections, including the Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York; Smithsonian Institution, Washington, DC; Los Angeles County Museum of Art; Victoria and Albert Museum, London; and Shigaraki Ceramic Cultural Park, Japan. Notkin's awards include three fellowships from the National Endowment for the Arts, and fellowships from the John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Foundation and Louis Comfort Tiffany Foundation.
Richard Notkin Artist Statement
We have stumbled into the 21st Century with the advanced technologies of "Star Wars" and the emotional maturity of cavemen. If we can't find more creative solutions to solving worldwide social and political problems than sending young men and women to shred and incinerate one another's flesh with weapons of ever increasing efficiency, we will not survive to celebrate the passage into the 22nd century. And to make a dangerous situation worse, our country and too many of our fragile planet's nations are now in the hands of right wing thugs and fundamentalist tyrants who are fumbling the planet towards World War III.
It is for these reasons, and far more, that I have chosen to continue to make ceramic sculptures which reflect on the social and political dilemmas of our world. As André Malraux observed, "Art is a revolt against man's fate." Need I say more?