YSU at the Ceramic Invitational: From kiln to collections
WaterFire Sharon, an organization that puts on artistic events across a spectrum of styles and mediums, will be hosting a Ceramic Invitational at the James E. Winner Jr. Arts and Culture Center from Sept. 9-29. The invitational will include a variety of renowned ceramicists displayed in galleries throughout the center.
Curator Christian Kuharik said that the show will include mostly fine arts professors from the surrounding area, some of whom are known at state, national and international levels for their work.
“It will be a pretty high-caliber show,” Kuharik said.
Among these 24 artists are two of Youngstown State University’s own. Missy McCormick, assistant professor of ceramics, and Mike Moseley, retired professor and coordinator of the spatial arts program, will each have pieces on display.
Originially from Atlanta, McCormick graduated with a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Ceramics from Southern Georgia University in 1994. She went on to receive her Masters of Fine Arts from the University of Florida in 2001. Before coming to YSU, McCormick taught ceramics in a variety of universities across North America, from Little Rock, Arkansas to Alberta, Canada.
McCormick has submitted three pieces for the event, all of which are part of her research at YSU. Each piece is a type of functional art — objects with artistic value that are also meant to function and serve a practical purpose and could range from clothing to an armchair.
“They’re functional objects in the sense that they are usable. You could serve food off of them or you could make bread out of it,” said McCormick.
Many of McCormick’s pieces echo old forms such as her rendition of “The Trencher,” a piece that was used in medieval dining.
“I also have a larger, rectangular trough-like form that I actually use as almost a produce pedestal,” said McCormick. “So you are coming out of the garden and you have lots of vegetables coming into the home, you can put it on that and, actually, it will kind of be a stand for it.”
Mike Moseley graduated from Texas Tech University in Lubbock Texas with a Bachelor of Fine Arts in 1973 and a Masters of Fine Arts in ceramics in 1976. Moseley began teaching ceramics at YSU in 1977 where he remained until his retirement. His position has been taken over by McCormick.
Moseley is submitting three hand-built pieces that use a technique known as image transfer. Image transfer is an artistic technique that involves placing an already existing image on a separate piece of art, in this case a ceramic.
“I’m really impressed with the show,” said McCormick. “There are really some of the strongest ceramic artists in the region. It is going to be a really, really good show. It is a very high-end show. All the people that I know that are in that show are all nationally or internationally known.”
The gallery will also be open to the public from Sept. 9 to Sept. 29, and a formal gallery opening will be held on Sept. 12 from 6 p.m. until 9 p.m.
The Ceramic Invitational is part of the larger World Fire event being held by WaterFire Sharon in downtown Sharon on Sept. 14. Multicultural events including pottery workshops, foreign food vendors and an array of music played throughout the day.
Attendees of the event on Sept. 14 will be treated to a winery, culinary experiences and a variety of music guests.