Photos and reporting by Robert Kokenyesi, Ceramic Artist, Beachfront Pottery, Godfrey, IL, 62035, USA. If you enjoyed this post, then give me a “like” on my Facebook page. There is additional information about Beachfront Pottery on my web site.
The Call for Entry
There was no formal call for entry, as the pieces were invited. As The ArtStLouis statement explains: The Honor Awards exhibition is an annual exhibit presented so that our Award of Excellence-winning artists from the previous year’s juried exhibitions have an additional opportunity to show their newest or more recent works and potentially have those works curated into a special ten-artist exhibition in the Art Saint Louis Gallery.
The Ceramic Art Pieces
I was happy to see a ceramic artist included among the ten artists.
It’s rare that the entire artist statement is relevant to all pieces in an exhibit. These are Bruce’s words from his web site: “As a child I was rough on my toys and constantly broke them. Unfortunately, I could not always convince my parents to buy me new ones to replace them. To salvage my toy collection I would sit in my father’s wood shop and glue the heads of G.I. Joe men onto the bodies of smaller broken Transformers to create cyborgs, or screw the arm of a Transformer onto one of my Stormtroopers to create an even more powerful Clone Army. Anything remaining that I could not use to make a new toy was used as props on my battlefield.
Currently the work I make revisits that time in my life when anything was possible and the rules of reality did not seem to limit what you could do. Taking old rusty parts I find in junkyards, flea markets, or stumble upon while walking, I try to give them a new purpose by combining them with ceramic forms to create my own hybrid ‘toys’. Old cogs become wheels, a cast iron stove leg becomes a seat, or a sprinkler head becomes an exhaust pipe. When looking for parts to make these toys I try not to think about their original purpose. I want to be a naïve child again, looking at something for the first time and making it what I need it to be. These ‘toys’ signify for me that time in our lives when life was carefree and you did not have a million e-mails to read or meetings to attend. The only thing that mattered was deciding what toy you were going to play with next.”
Very sharp looking pieces!! Here is to the power of imagination to fix toys.