Melanie Ferguson

 

ARTIST STATEMENT

"My goal is to establish a form and surface visual that expresses an edge of uncertainty and vulnerability with the power to initiate a dialogue with the story discovered within — a story that invites pause and ultimately engages our next move."

 

 

 

Write what you know: I apply this literary principal to design.  An eroding hillside, the swirling ripple on waters' surface, the rhythmic pattern of ocean flora, shadow, reflection, sound, and smell feeds my inner spirit and challenges my creative process by revealing a story that arouses an impulse to free and expose the spirit of that which you know. Using stoneware or earthenware, I hand-build my sculptural forms, coiling the clay and paddling the form's surface to engage with its inner resonance which is reminiscent of tidal rhythm and flow. I then add oxide stains (usually copper and iron), clay-based slips, color pigmented underglaze, and sgraffito techniques to establish a surface visual that maps the spirited dance within. I engage many firing methods appropriate for each work, with a preference for atmospheric firing. How the surface elements attract and cast flame plays an integral role in the evolution of the story that ultimately causes pause and ignites the beginning of my next work.