Giselle Hicks at Porches

2020 Summer Season

GISELLE HICKS Featured Artist at Porches

The Porches Inn at Mass MoCA, North Adams, MA

2020 Summer Season | On View starting July 31, 2020

FERRIN CONTEMPORARY is pleased to announce Giselle Hicks, as the featured artist at Porches.

The Porches Inn is currently closed to the public and programming set to open July 31, 2020, due to COVID-19. 

Giselle Hicks is known for her hand-pinched ceramic vessels and slip-cast porcelain tiles that consider volume, repetition, and pattern. Referencing totemic ceramic forms and decorative textiles, her work examines the role of material culture in everyday life—historically and today. Hicks has participated in various artist-in-residence programs including the Anderson Ranch Arts Center, the Arts/Industry Program at the Kohler Company, The Clay Studio in Philadelphia, Greenwich House Pottery, and The Archie Bray Foundation.

Her work has been exhibited at the Museum of Fine Arts in Boston, (Boston, MA), Belger Arts Center, (Kansas City, MO), the John Michael Kohler Arts Center, (Sheboygan, WI), and Bellevue Art Museum, (Bellevue, WA). In 2001, Hicks completed her BFA at Syracuse University, and she received her MFA from the New York State College of Ceramics at Alfred University in 2010.

“I make a range of things with clay, including floral Still-Lifes, full-scale ceramic tables and beds, decorative wall tiles inspired by textiles and pinched vessels. I enjoy a studio practice where I can move from one body of work to another where each process satisfies a different creative impulse, always with the intention of making something beautiful for one to encounter or live with.

These hand-pinched vessels are inspired by iconic forms found throughout ceramic history. They are formal explorations in shape, volume, color and composition. The slow and rhythmic forming process employs very few tools, yielding fresh, dynamic silhouettes. The opaque glaze is soft to the touch like a worn river stone. Fingerprints remain in the clay surface celebrating the slight imperfections of the handmade object.”

“This series of work is influenced by decorative textiles such as quilts, weavings, and embroidered tapestries. I think the labor dedicated to creating these textiles, particularly the quilt, is a beautiful gesture to the significance of these everyday objects which are integral to the rituals of daily life. I want this work to reflect the same care, attention, and labor that went into making the original textiles.

The process of slip-casting has its roots in industry and is used to make a form repeatedly, often on a mass scale. When I begin a new project, I first make a prototype of a pillow by carving a block of plaster into the shape of a soft pillow. Next, I make a two-part plaster mold of the prototype. Once the molds are prepared, I pour colored porcelain-slip into the molds, where it sits for an hour at which point I pour out the excess slip. The plaster mold absorbs the moisture from the porcelain slip, resulting in a hollow form with quarter-inch thick walls. When the form comes out of the mold, I draw the pattern into the surface with a sharp stylus. Once the carving is complete I paint a colored slip over the whole design, wipe the excess off, and what slip remains is inlaid into the carved pattern. The unglazed porcelain looks soft and invites the touch.”

Read More about Giselle Hicks

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