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Tony Marsh Works Biography

The ceramic vessel is currently my primary vehicle of expression.  I am fascinated by it’s deep and unparalleled history and position between nature and culture.  While the vessels that I make are not utilitarian nor do they specifically refer to a historical pottery type or style, I believe that I use them as a device to address the essential.  On a simple level they do attempt to pay homage to what pottery from around the world has always been required to do, hold, store, preserve, offer, commemorate and beautify.

Marriage, fertility, creation, death and the difference between the numinous and the physical are the “essential” primary subjects related to human experience that occur and reoccur in my work.

Much of the work is dichotomous in nature; being both sensual and cerebral, organic & geometric, solid & weightless, masculine & feminine.

In the end, whether it might be a vase on a table, an empty coin bank, the bowl on the night stand, a burial urn or a ballot box, what could be more natural than to put something in a vessel?

Statement Specific to PERFORATED VESSEL:

There is something ironic about taking a material like clay which is dense, opaque and ruled by gravity and then removing as much mass as possible, replacing it with light and creating forms that hover.  It is addition by subtraction.  The surface is coated with between 4 and 6 applications of a vitreous engobe.  Light enters the surface of the work and refracts through the body of glaze.

The work changes according to the ambient light of the environment within which it resides.  The forms that rest in the vessels are all shapes that we know, primarily rendered from geometric solids. By perforating them as intensely as I am able and covering them with a surface that at times can glow, it is my intention with this work to begin to dematerialize those forms perhaps to suggest the etherial.