By Susan Voss
Within the Land of Enchantment there is an abundance of gifted ceramic artists who develop their craft across the state. One of the great gifts of clay and surface design is that almost any expression of art and form is possible. This is the gift of the current show at the Albuquerque Sunport, a broad array of ceramic form and color brightens the showcases and provides a swatch of the talent within New Mexico. The show is organized by the New Mexico Potters and Clay Artists (NMPCA) that promotes excellence and creativity in the clay arts. The Sunport Ceramics Showcase is currently on display and will be available to see until April 30th, 2023 in the bottom floor of the airport in the passageway to the vehicle parking. A link to the display can be found at https://www.nmpotters.org/NMPCA-Sunport-Ceramics-Showcase-Albuquerque-New-Mexico-A-Catalog-of-ceramics-works and a link to an image of each piece in the display, price and the artist name and contact information is found at https://www.nmpotters.org/page-1800744.
Each of the three showcases provides a range of ceramic expressions from large vessels and platters, abstract sculpture, to sculptures representing fish, animals and the human form. The beautiful variation in form, surface design and color immediately catches the viewer’s eyes and beckons them to take a closer look. The range in expression will entice different viewers and hold them intrigued and enchanted.
Coming off of the elevator from the baggage area upstairs, one is met with the first set of ceramic expressions. The overall sense of horizontal flow as seen in Karin Bergh “School of Fish” and stability of place expressed in Robert King’s vase with flowers ("Untitled"). Within the overall arrangement there is an expression of rising up as in the central piece “Nest” by Judy Nelson-Moore and of holding place as seen in the abstract piece “Wrinkles in Nature” by Catherine McClain. Several of the vessels demonstrate the beauty and variability of alternative firing processes including Gail Goodwin’s “Ceremonial Vessel,” Sjoran Fitzpatrick’s “Remembering,” and Serit Kotowski’s “Seed Jar.” The three female sculptures show how varied the female figure can be modeled to express a sense of joy, knowing and being.
First set off the escalator. Photo by Susan Voss.
The central showcase provides a feast of colors and forms. From the two solemn central figures in the sculpture “Afghanistan” by Lois Olcott Price, the colorful and widely expressive gargoyles by Darla Graff Thompson, to the rabbit topped “Listening Desert” by Jacquito Beddo, the many human and animal figures within the display invite the viewer to pause and consider each piece. The gathering of forms “The Seven Sisters” by Luisa Baldinger, the abstract and symbolic forms including Ann Trott’s “Pod / Emerging” and Sharon Brush’s “Acclimation” contrast beautifully with the functional art of the “Cosmos Vase” by Adam Padilla, “Earthscape” vessel by Jenna Ritter and “Lizard Plate” by Richard Orlando. The simple and the complex come together to demonstrate the range of expression possible with clay.
The central showcase. Photo by Susan Voss.
The last of the three showcases before exiting the Sunport provides a broad display of ceramic expressions. The central piece by Sheena Cameron entitled “Our Deb Haaland” is a sculpture of the current US Secretary of the Interior from the Laguna Pueblo Tribe, NM. Several abstract pieces within the showcase capture a range of movement and colors unique to each artist’s vision. The three large platters and bowls demonstrate the beauty that can be achieved through the simplicity of a white shino surface, or through the vibrant colors of an expansive red poppy (Okjoo Lee’s “Hot Summer”) or through the use of intricate pattern and color (Charlotte Ownby's "Vibrancy I"). The lovely range of vessels and forms demonstrate the ability of the artist to express their visions in many different forms including “Ceremonial Vessel I” by Gail Goodwin, “Shoulder Jar” by Lee Akins, images of cranes in a sea of blue (“Cranes Rendezvous”) by Tomas Wolff, and the “Fish Rising” by Sjoran Fitzpatrick. The vibrant colors of Andrea Pichaida's “Moonrise Over the Sandias” contrast with the cool form of the “Gem cup” by Casey Pendergast.
Last of the three showcases before exiting. Photo by Susan Voss.
The collection of ceramic expression from across New Mexico is greater and deeper than could be captured in a few short paragraphs and images. Only a handful of pieces and artists have been highlighted and yet, there are many more! A visit to the Sunport Airport is encouraged during the short time this show is open for viewing. A full listing of each item, the artist and cost is provided online along with an email address to the artist. It is impossible to express how interesting and varied the NMPCA show is and the best advice is to visit the show for yourself. Take a moment and enjoy!