Everybody’s Ocean: Wave II

Celebrate the opening of Wave II of Everybody’s Ocean in the Solari Gallery at the Santa Cruz Museum of Art & History. Opening reception of Wave II: Free First Friday, March 6th 5-9 PM. Click here for more information.  Words of thanks by curator Justin Hoover at 7:30. Everybody’s Ocean is a massive crowd-sourced exhibition featuring artwork about the ocean. An installation from my Bone Series has been a part of this exhibition as one of the “anchored” pieces of the show and this has been an incredible exhibit to be a part of. Come see for yourself!

Jenni Ward ceramic sculpture | bone series | museum of art and history
The ocean represents anything from womb to tomb. We personify it as a wrathful god, a seductive spirit, or an indomitable force. The four oceans of the world cover 71% of the Earth’s surface and link us to primordial pasts. The ocean is a living, shared space and one of the greatest unexplored mysteries of the world.  Everybody interprets the ocean in different ways.

Series Showcase: Lichen

In the spirit of revisiting older but still very relevant work, I’d like to take the time to showcase some of my series, this time the lichen series. Sometimes work comes and goes in the studio so quickly you don’t have much time to live with it, but these pieces have graced the shelves of the studio for a while and I’ve gotten to spend time thinking about them and why I’ve made them.

jenni ward ceramic sculpture | lichen seriesjenni ward ceramic sculpture | lichen series jenni ward ceramic sculpture | lichen series

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Secretly, I’m kind of happy that this piece hasn’t sold yet, I really love this guy and hope it goes to a good home someday! Its up on my studio wall, so I get to check it out all day while I’m working.  It was kind of a spontaneous build, so the longer I live with it, the more I get to think about why I made it.

While I was working on it all of the parts were laying flat on the table and they had the appearance of slick whale bodies with crustaceans growing on their skin- it seemed very of the sea. But as soon as the pieces went on the wall the feel about them changed to growing plants or a forest of burnt trees that had died and new growth was taking over and hence how the lichen series was named. I also really love how activated all the spaces in-between each piece is. This series is a study in the balance of duality, the pieces play with ideas of death and regrowth, the power of negative space and the contrast of black and white. Each lichen growth is fused in place by the glazing process in the kiln. These pieces are hand-built from high fired stoneware and each piece is original and unique.

If you’d like to add pieces from lichen series to your collection, click for more information.

Have art, will travel

Jenni Ward ceramic sculpture | in the field | rock candy seriesI recently took a camping/adventure road trip to the desert with my husband and whenever possible I always add a selection of my sculptures to the packing list. This time I brought a box of about 50 pieces from my brand new rock candy series. These pieces are designed to be wall mounted (and maybe will be one day!) but I had a suspicion that I could hide the plain backsides of them when I arranged them in the field. The rock formations I found had large cracks and layers to them formed from ancient magma and I thought they were the perfect place to put these little colorful gems. Check out more picture here…

Series Showcase: Seed Pods

In the spirit of revisiting older but still very relevant work, I’d like to take the time to showcase some of my series. Sometimes work comes and goes in the studio so quickly you don’t have much time to live with it, but these pieces have graced the shelves of the studio for the better part of a year and I’ve gotten to spend time thinking about them and why I’ve made them.
Jenni Ward ceramic sculpture | seed pod seriesJenni Ward ceramic sculpture | seed pod seriesJenni Ward ceramic sculpture | seed pod series

This series, named the seed pod series is a study in form and texture. The interesting part is that this is the second seed pod series I’ve made. The first group was made in 2006 and resemble their follow-up series but the older pieces focus more on the outside of the form while the newer ones focus more on the inner workings of a seed.  I am inspired by the forms of seed pods that I find while exploring the forest near my home studio. I love the way a seed will sprout roots and shoots; each part fragile and vulnerable but fiercely determined. I tried to explore this action in an abstract way and make them seem to be hatching an unidentified new life form. The surface of these pieces has been decorated using a wax resist process which enhances the depth of texture. I also like to play with the contrast of glossy and matte glazes on the surface of the clay as well as neutral tones next to flashy turquoises and lime greens. Each spiny shoot is fused in place by the glazing process in the kiln. These pieces are hand-built from high fired stoneware and each piece is original and unique.

If you’d like to add pieces from seed pod series to your collection, many are available in the shop.

 

rock candy | work in progress

This is the first batch of ‘rock candy’ coming out of the kiln, they are simple, bright and irresistible to pick up and touch. These rocks have more color than I have used on my work in a loooong time, but I just can’t stop making them. Eventually, I plan to have around 100 pieces in a variety of sizes. All are designed to be wall mounted and installed to create a rock candy river. I’m also thinking about doing an In The Field installation with these pieces this summer. Not sure where they will end up yet, but if you’re interested or know of a great space for them, drop me an email. I hope you enjoy these pieces as much as I do!