“My work portrays characters placed in situations that are drawn from my imagination but based on my life experiences.  My art works capture a composite of fleeting moments, hand gestures, eye movements that follow and reveal the sentiments expressed.  These details are all derived from actual observations but are gathered or collected over my lifetime.  Through the drawn images and sculpted forms, I capture faces, body types and use symbolic elements to compose, in the same way as you might create a collage.  These ideas drift and migrate throughout my work without direct regard to specific individuals, chronology or geography.  Universalism is implied and personal interpretation expected.   Through my work I get to report about and explore human encounters, comment on the relationships between man and woman, and eventually their sexual union that leads to the final outcome – the passing on of DNA which is the ultimate collection – a combined set of genes and a new life, represented in the child.”  Often called an erotic Surrealist for his daring representations of sexuality, relationships, and human encounter, Isupov takes narrative subject matter and merges it with ceramic sculptural form. Drawing on personal experience, and human observation, he creates works that integrate autobiography with universal narrative. He states, “Everything that surrounds and excites me is automatically processed and transformed into…an artwork. […] The essence of my work is not in the medium or the creative process, but in the human beings and their incredible diversity. When I think of myself and my works, I’m not sure I create them, perhaps they create me.” While the robust, and racially distinct facial traits make each sculpture unique, they also make the body of work capable of representing universal experiences. The bold color palette, heavily tattooed faces, and textured surfaces relate these works to the aesthetics of traditional Russian art, as well as to contemporary styles of illustration.


Sergei Isupov (b. 1963, Stavropol, Russia, lives in Cummington, MA) graduated from the Art Institute of Tallinn, Estonia in 1990 with a BA/MFA in Ceramics. In 1994 he immigrated to the United States. Isupov has a long international resume with work included in numerous collections and exhibitions, including the National Gallery of Australia, Museum of Fine Arts, Houston (TX), Museum of Arts and Design (NY), Racine Art Museum (WI), Museum of Fine Arts Boston (MA) and most recently Hidden Messages, a 20-year career survey was presented at the Erie Art Museum in 2017.

His work is featured in numerous books, catalogs and magazines including Postmodern Ceramics, Sex Pots: Eroticsm in Ceramics, The Ceramic Surface; Shy Boy, She Devil, and Isis: The Art of Conceptual Craft; Confrontational Ceramics. He teaches workshops and lectures internationally at museums, universities and art centers. Recent residencies include Archie Bray Foundation, Helena (MT), The International Ceramics Studio, Kecskemét, Hungary and Guldagergaard, International Ceramic Research Center, Skælskør, Denmark.

In 2001 was awarded the Louis Comfort Tiffany Biennial Award. He works in porcelain using traditional hand building and sculpting techniques to combine surface and form with narrative painting using stains and clear glaze.








FALL & WINTER WITH FERRIN CONTEMPORARY   FERRIN CONTEMPORARY, located on the campus of MASS MoCA, lies in the heart of the Berkshires. The gallery is located at 1315 MASS...


CERAMICS ARE EVERYWHERE private collections are on view in public museums Massachusetts, California and Toronto BEYOND FUNCTION: CONTEMPORARY CERAMICS FROM THE DONALD CLARK COLLECTION LAST CHANCE  On View through September...


MIDSUMMER AT PROJECT ARTHOPS+POTS  July 28PROJECT ART OPEN HOUSE  July 28 & 29 Join us for a weekend of local art, food, music, and, of course, beer. HOPS+POTS July 28, 6–8:30pm...


ARTIST NEWS: SERGEI ISUPOV Ferrin Contemporary presentsDIRECTIONS: SERGEI ISUPOV 1315 MASS MoCA Way, North Adams, MA This exhibition explores a range of ideas leading in new directions. Isupov, an established sculptor...

ARTIST NEWS: SERGEI ISUPOV shows and workshops

FIGURE—GROUND: Illustrated Sculpture Workshops with Sergei Isupov TWO UPCOMING WORKSHOPS April 8–14, 2018 and September 23–29, 2018 both at Project Art, Cummington, MA Join internationally acclaimed sculptor Sergei Isupov for...

Sabbath: The 2017 Dorothy Saxe Invitational

Sabbath: The 2017 Dorothy Saxe Invitational Nov 12, 2017—Feb 25, 2018 Contemporary Jewish Museum, San Francisco, CA Ferrin Contemporary artists Sergei Isupov, Jason Walker, Kurt Weiser, and Beth Lipman are among the...


"Alice in Wonderland" Architectural Digest: "Alice in Wonderland" by Sonia S. Braga "At Saffi's Offices in Milan, eight international artists of art ceramics interpret the visionary and surreal atmospheres of...

Renwick Alliance: Berkshire Tour in October

Mint Museum Founder's Circle & James Renwick Alliance HEART OF THE BERKSHIRES TOURA Visual Arts Experience in Western MassachusettsOctober 19–22, 2017curated itinerary focused on studio ceramics and glass for up...

RE—Reanimate, Repair, Mend and Meld

RE—REANIMATE, REPAIR, MEND AND MELD co-curated by Paul Scott and Andrew Baseman a group show of work by contemporary ceramic artists explores the issues of conservation, restoration, over-consumption, reuse, and…

Sergei Isupov in Hi Fructose

“Sergei Isupov’s Surreal Ceramics Combine Paintings with Sculpture” by Anna Carey in Hi Fructose, The New Contemporary Art Magazine. “Russian-born artist Sergei Isupov investigates binaries in human relationships — male and…

A Clay Bestiary VIRTUAL TOUR on video

Video offers another chance to view and enjoy A Clay Bestiary. A Clay Bestiary, a recent show at the Hunterdon Art Museum in Clinton, New Jersey, brought together a diverse body of ceramic…

Isupov in Hi-Fructose

“He sculpts human and animal figures, and then adds illustrations in glaze. The paintings diffuse into the clay’s surface, like tattoos on his sculptures’ skin. Taken together, the two- and three-dimensional elements of his work establish a compacted but powerful scene of emotions and narratives. “

Isupov work added to ASU Museum

  New Sergei Isupov work added to the collection June 26, 2014 at 9:42 pm  The ASU Art Museum is thrilled to add its first Sergei Isupov sculpture into the permanent…

Ferrin Contemporary’s 10 Best of 2013

[one_half content_align=”left”] New Blue and White Museum of Fine Arts, Boston important exhibition of contemporary cross-cultural interchange Robin Best Project Art visiting artist from Jingdezhen, China summer 2013 Animal Stories…

Sergei Isupov in Art News

Doug McClemont reviews solo show of Sergei Isupov’s recent work at Barry Friedman’s gallery in New York in ARTnews, October 2013.    

Heads, Busts, and Nudes figural ceramic sculpture from 1970 to the present

Work by 25 contemporary artists “working in clay and for whom the figure has been a rich and enduring motif.” Catalog includes work from the exhibit at Ferrin Contemporary as well as pieces available from private collections and artist studios.

• Introduction by Leslie Ferrin, Director, Ferrin Contemporary

• Essay by Mark Leach, author and independent curator full-color catalog


sergei RAM catalog cover_300h
Collection Focus: Sergei Isupov at RAM
Sergei Isupov Catalog 1996-2006_300
Sergei Isupov: 1996-2006
Sergei Isupov Catalog Androgyny_300
Sergei Isupov: Androgyny