Draw + Decal at MudFire Gallery

MudFire Gallery's exhibition Draw+Decal presents the work of thirteen contemporary clay artists known for their use of imagery and narrative on vessel forms. In doing so, the exhibit and sale takes a detailed look at updated studio techniques for creating illustrated ceramic surfaces. Featured artists include Patty Bilbro, Naomi Cleary, Bruce Gholson, Erik Haagensen, Samantha Henneke, Ruchika Madan, Brooke Noble, Stefan Ritter, Elizabeth Robinson, Justin Rothshank, Luba Sharapan, Sue Tirrell, and Betsy Williams.

Draw+Decal will be on view at MudFire Gallery July 11 - August 1, 2009. The opening night reception will be held from 5-9pm on Saturday, July 11, 2009. All works displayed will be available for purchase.


It is impossible to grace the surface of clay without acknowledging thousands of years of history. Many of the techniques and materials in use today were developed millennia ago, but those leading the field are combining new technologies with fresh viewpoints on design and illustration. In the contemporary studio pottery movement, it is no longer enough to simply master form and apply the age-old transformational alchemy of glaze and firing. A new visual language is developing on the surface of today's vessels.

American studio pottery finds itself at a moment both awkward and illuminating. We stand gratefully venerating the pioneering masters of the post-war studio pottery movement, while also looking eagerly to the next generation and forward to where we are heading. Today's studio pottery takes advantage of new technology and contemporary design and illustration sensibilities that allow us to update ceramic surface and lay the groundwork for new traditions. Clay artists benefit not just from an instantly accessible global compendium of illustrative inspirations, but also from the ability to deploy an updated set of tools and technologies to realize their visions. Traditional techniques using pen and brush, the magic of silk-screening, or carving and resists, are joined by more recent innovations like vector art and one-off continuous tone ceramic decal printing. Never before has so great a catalog of commercial finishing materials and purified chemicals been available for mixing and innovating with. Studio pottery, so enabled, is taking on a frenzied, energetic exploration of where clay surface can now go.

Draw + Decal presents a snapshot of this moment, an educational survey of available techniques, and the opportunity for both collector and creator to engage fully in this exciting time in clay.
Images and additional information about each of the artists can be found at:http://www.mudfire.com/draw-and-decal.htm


MudFire Clayworks and Gallery is a unique community art center dedicated to clay arts. Celebrating its 7th anniversary this year, MudFire Clayworks is home to over 150 artists, and is equipped with pottery wheels, sculpting equipment, communal tools, glazes, kilns and plenty of inspiration. Artists in residence and "free range" instructors make it a perfect place for beginners as well as seasoned ceramicists. MudFire also brings high profile artists from around the world to Atlanta for lectures, slide presentations, demonstration workshops, and intensive hands-on classes.

MudFire Gallery is Atlanta's clay-only gallery, providing representation for some of the Southeast's top potters and sculptors. MudFire also celebrates this diverse and accessible medium with monthly exhibits of functional and decorative works including solo, group and themed exhibits.

The gallery is open Thursday - Monday from Noon to 8pm and by appointment. The studio is open Saturday & Sunday from Noon to 8pm, and on Monday-Thursday-Friday from Noon to 10pm.
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