Tuesday, February 2, 2010

the process

A bit more about the Concurrent Independent Exhibition program that NCECA hosts can be found here:


In late 2008 this group of artists came together and began to develop a CIE proposal for the 2010 NCECA conference in Philadelphia, PA. The process was entirely collaborative, as it was important to us that we all have had a say in developing the concept behind the exhibition. You can think of this as a collectively curated exhibition. As outlined in the above link, NCECA requires a standard proposal format that includes a written description of the exhibition as well as a number of images and supporting documents for each of the artists involved. Below is the proposal as submitted:

"Title: Multiples of Five

Participating Artists:
Frederick Bartolovic, Jim Hake, Casey McDonough, Robin Strangfeld, Blake Jamison Williams

Blades of grass in a field, plastic Solo cups in the grocery store, individual units repeated add infinitum and composing the texture of much of our world. Whether man-made or organic, designed or grown, multiple units evoke issues of the unstoppable forces of nature, the mass production of a culture which always consumes more, and the obsession of the maker.

For us as artists, repetition of form inspires a repetition of process, while raising questions about matter produced and disposed in both nature, and our culture. Through our own hand-made assembly lines we question the value of the object and seek to create something new through the repetition and rhythm of form. A dance ensues that vacillates between an object’s fragmentation and it’s accumulation into something surprising, creating a new dialogue.

Individually we question the obsession of process, the collective networking systems related to the individual, our corporeal relationship to technology, as well as the mystery and meaning of new forms emerging from multiple individual objects. Collectively, we compose a cross section of ceramists, both men and women working throughout the United States and Canada. We are five individuals, each of whom works with multiples as a means of expression.

"Multiples of Five" will be an energetic exhibition where figure, object, and installation intersect with repetition...from translucent porcelain to earthenware, each artist's approach to process and conceptual exploration is expressed within the realm of the multiple.

If this proposal is accepted as a 2010 NCECA Concurrent Exhibition, we are aware that we will need to pay for shipping to and from the venue as well as be responsible for the set up and take down of the exhibition. Conveniently, many of us live within a short driving distance from Philadelphia ranging from one to nine hours. The nearest member of our group, Casey McDonough, lives in Allentown, Pa, and will work as an on-site liaison if necessary. We are open to working with a commercial gallery, non-profit organization, or "raw" space. Since our work is based on multiples we are a flexible group when it comes to space. We will install work that fits the space in an aesthetically pleasing way"

In January of 2009 we received email confirmation from Linda Ganstrom, current NCECA exhibitions director, that the proposal for "Multiples of Five" had been accepted as a Concurrent Independent Exhibition for the 2010 conference. We immediately launched into action, working together to develop interesting ideas for the promotion and execution of the exhibition. Linda subsequently passed our proposal on to Naomi Cleary from the Clay Studio in Philadelphia in order to find a suitable site for our exhibition.

In October of 2009 we received confirmation from Naomi that our exhibition would be sited in a unique "industrial" or "raw" space at Amber Studios in the Richmond Mills area of Philadelphia. We would be responsible for installation of the exhibition, which suited the constituents of the group nicely.

With a site finally pinned down we pushed onward with our amazing and incredible ideas...


  1. thanks for posting this site, casey. will anyone read it other than us bots?

    and whats all that talk about flexibility?