Clay Art Center is proud to present Matthew Metz & Linda Sikora: RECENT WORKS, a duo exhibition featuring the utilitarian pottery of nationally recognized clay artists Matthew Metz and Linda Sikora. The exhibit, held in the Choy Gallery,will run from April 4 – 25, 2009 with an opening reception on Saturday, April 4 from 6-8pm. Additionally, in the upstairs Henry’s Project space, we will have pottery for sale by Clay Art Center artists on display. Admission is free.
Matthew and Linda will also be leading a one-day workshop on Saturday, April 4 from 10am - 5pm. Matthew Metz and Linda Sikora will simultaneously demonstrate the methods they use to make their signature works. For more information, or to register, visit www.clayartcenter.org
When selecting artists for a duo exhibition, there are certain things to consider. The works must compliment one another - one person’s work should enhance qualities in the other’s person’s work and visa versa. The work should be different enough so one can easily distinguish between the two artists, but also there needs to be threads of similarity to create a cohesive environment in the gallery. Matthew Metz and Linda Sikora are a perfect match – in life and in the gallery. Married, the two live in Alfred Station, NY, and share a studio and home together. While both create utilitarian works, their approach to the surface is very different. Linda enhances her works with loose patterns of polychrome glazes, which melt and drip in the firing, blurring the lines between spontaneity and precision. Matthew’s works, heavily carved with patterns and images from his life experiences, are more personal and narrative.
About her work Linda states, “Jars and teapots have been central to my practice for the last few years. The teapot, more demanding of specific engineering particular to its function, and the jar, a generous canvas, its criteria of containment more permissive. These pieces fuel or act as counterpoint to other forms, or subjects under consideration. I am interested in pottery form for its familiarity and congeniality, its ability to disappear into private/personal activities and places. But this is only one aspect of the work that, through its intelligence of color, form and stance can also excite/awaken attention and thereby reflects back to the viewer their own imagination. Invisible or visible, or oscillating back and forth between these states, the pots foster both attention and inattention. They are insistently existent, and continuously stir.”
Matthew Metz declares, “My work is influenced by a variety of sources: Asian pottery traditions, Greek and Roman pots, early American decorative arts, face jugs and other folk traditions. The images on my pots are decorative. Our culture tends to look at decoration as embellishment without meaning – frosting on the cake. While I resist apply direct narrative and literal definition to my iconography, the patterns and images I choose come from my life and experience. Interest in the natural sciences (evolutionary biology, ethology) and history (archeology, physical culture) find their way, obliquely, into the work. A coffee cup has as much capacity to carry meaning as any other form of expression.”
Linda Sikora is a studio artist who maintains a pottery in Alfred Station, New York. During the academic year she is an Associate Professor and Division Head of Ceramic Art at Alfred University School of Art and Design. Linda studied at Nova Scotia College of Art and Design (BFA) and the University of Minnesota – Minneapolis (MFA) and, later taught at Emily Carr Art Institute of Art & Design in Vancouver Canada, Ohio State University and the University of Boulder Colorado before moving to Alfred. Linda was a resident at the Archie Bray Foundation and recently presented a workshop/lecture there. Other venues she has presented in include numerous academic art programs, Penland, Haystack, Arrowmont and the Clay Edge Conference in Gulgong, Australia. Linda has also presented at symposiums in Tiawan, Korea and China. Sikora’s work is exhibited and collected nationally and internationally.
Born in 1961, in Kendallville, Indiana, Matthew Metz lives in Alfred Station, NY where he is a full-time potter. He attended Ball State University, Muncie, Indiana (BFA ceramics 1983) and Edinboro University of Pennsylvania (MFA ceramics 1985). He is the recipient of Mid-Atlantic States Arts Consortium/NEA residency grant (1986) and a National Endowment for the Arts fellowship (1990). His work is exhibited and collected nationally and internationally and he has led workshops across the nation.