BFA Thesis Exhibit

Danielle Ike


Artist Statement

In my artistic practice I work with photography and hand-built ceramics. The digital photographs are printed onto inkjet paper ranging from five by seven inches to twenty-two by seventeen inches long. The ceramic vases and vessels are made from a groggy stoneware clay body, fired to two thousand three hundred- and fifty-degrees fahrenheit and covered in an iron brown or light creamy blue glaze. The concepts behind the work I create deal with the sense of home, comfort, issues of body confidence and self-confidence. In order to build upon these concepts, I am using my current apartment and my own body as guides and reference points.  

The photographic work I create has been strongly influenced by the work of Francesca Woodman and Imogen Cunningham. Woodman deals with issues of the female form and very successfully positions her body in the photograph as an object or a moving part of the world. Her self-portraits strongly influence my own in positioning and the seclusion she creates in her work. Cunningham created beautiful botanical prints that influence the light and shadows I capture in my home space. The way she can capture the light with different flora creates a very soft and warm feeling that emanates from them, and I will be creating that same feeling. The ceramic works I create are not influenced by any ceramicists, but they are influenced by my photographic work. These vases and vessels will be bodily but will offer this up in a more abstract sense. They will have a bumpy texture that remains soft and will be covered in a dark brown glaze and some in a light, creamy blue glaze. The installation portion of my show will be composed so that the viewer has an overwhelming sense of space, but as they come closer to the work the space becomes less and less apparent as the two works begin to interact and blend together. Texture and softness are very important to both mediums to create the feelings of warmth and an invitation into my home and work. The ceramic work is a direct reflection of my body and the comfort I have with my body whereas the photographs actively depict the spaces I feel comfortable in.  

As an artist I am creating photographs that document light and shadows in my living space and ceramic vases and vessels that mimic the body in different aspects. The photographs will serve to appeal to a sense of home, comfort and warmth while being inviting for the viewer. Both of the mediums I work in will create a general space of invitation to allow the viewers to look closer and stay with the works longer. The ceramic vases and vessels serve as my self-portraits in an abstract way that is subtle and pulls the viewer in to look longer. Overall, my work creates a space of solace and safety, allowing those who view my work to be comforted by the imagery they see, and the vessels created in conjunction with the photographs.  

A small cylindrical vase is presented with a light creamy blue glaze that is almost white. Click to view A small cylindrical vase is presented with a light creamy blue glaze that is almost white. Full-Screen

Thigh // Fired stoneware, rutile blue glaze // 9 X 5 1/2 X 18 inches
Stomach // Fired stoneware, iron brown tenmoku // 20 X 23 ½ X 43 inches
Leg // Fired stoneware, rutile blue glaze // 14 X 5 ¾ X 20 inches