It was love at first sight and touch in 1972 when I first put hand to clay. Its limitless possibilities, cultural history and the virtually worthless material from which such richness emerges (a timely social statement) should have made for a marriage ‘till death do us part’. But real life intervenes.
My first deep dive into ceramics occurred while living in Oxford revealing the influence of Hamada, Leach (household names to folks I studied with at the Oxford Polytechnic), Bauhaus emigres and the wild Americans inventing clay modernism.
When I returned to my clay/artist roots around 2014 (after a productive career advancing my family and women's human rights), I was startled by the pull towards unresolved aesthetic challenges; they’d waited a long time.
Particular visual objectives led me to raku – to get the blackest blacks and most evocative crackles, and to burnished terra sig—to reveal the extraordinary tactile qualities highlighted by horsehair and feather abstractions.
An “If not now, when?” reality (my advice regardless of age) fuels a continuous exploration of forms and firing techniques. Why not? Although the relationship retains a lot of aesthetic tension, forty-so years later, my first love and I get along awfully well.
JUST THE FACTS
Studio Potter/Artist (www.libbyhawkstudiopotter.com) August 2016 – Present
Self-employed Studio Artist, concentrations include clay work, sculpture and painting; firing techniques -- raku, electric and gas. Open personal studio August 2017. Exhibit regionally, Sarasota Art Center, Venice Art Center, Manatee Art Center; attend Morean Clay Center Wood Firing Workshop, January 2016.
Ceramic Instructor, Suncoast Technical College (http://suncoast.edu). Sarasota, FL, Fundamentals and Form: Wheel Skills for the Striving Potter. September 2016 – Present
Mount Holyoke College, South Hadley, MA, BA, English
City University of New York, MFA, Ceramics
Art Students League, New York City
Ruskin School of Art, Oxford, England
Oxford Brookes University, Headington, England
Bangkok Museum, Seminar Series, South East Asian Art History and Ceramics, Thailand
Teaching/Lecturing, New York City
Riverside Church Arts and Crafts Program
Earthworks Pottery—Adults and Children
Parsons School of Design Guest Lectures: Ceramics of Southeast Asia, English Arts and Crafts Movement, Chinese Export Ware
Exhibits and Awards
Florida CraftArt, Top Shelf,Juried Exhibit, May – June 2016; Art Center Sarasota, LOCAL 707,Juried Exhibit, Honorable Mention, May-June 2016; Manatee Art Center, Hot Hot Hot, Juried Exhibit, June – July 2016; 2017 - 2019, additional local shows.
NYC: Surroundings Gallery, WBAI Crafts Show, The Graduate Center, City University of New York, Clayworks Studio Workshop, “New York State – New Clay Talent".
Joan Libby Hawk, Studio Potter
Interpreting Clay, Color, Form