UCCS downtown gallery GOCA121 opens “CERAMICA: Contemporary Clay” exhibit

Daisy McConnell, (719) 255-3504, dmcconne@uccs.edu Tom Hutton, (719) 255-3439, (719) 351-6519, thutton@uccs.edu

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. – The University of Colorado Colorado Springs Galleries of Contemporary Art will present a new exhibit surveying the practices of regional contemporary ceramic art and artists beginning Feb. 8 in the downtown gallery, GOCA121, centrally located in the Plaza of the Rockies at 121 S. Tejon Street Suite 100.

NgElaine_Closeup“CERAMICA: Contemporary Clay” is the first major contemporary ceramics exhibit in more than a decade in Colorado Springs. CERAMICA features five artists, Corie Cole, Del Harrow, Jerry Morris, Elaine K. Ng and Mark Wong. The exhibit opens with a public reception from 5 p.m. to 9 p.m. Friday, Feb. 8 and includes artist talks starting at 6 p.m.

CERAMICA exhibit hours are from noon to 5 p.m. Wednesday through Saturday or by appointment through April 12. All events are free and open to the public.

About the artists

Corie Cole employs humor, cognitive dissonance and the absurd to jar the viewer out of customary ways of thinking about politics, and to critique the power of the individual and the figurehead. Cole completed her MFA at Arizona State University in 2008 where her thesis work focused on the social and political implications of globalization and outsourcing. Cole works out of a backyard ceramics studio in Colorado Springs. For more information, visit www.coriecole.com.

Del Harrow is a sculptor who works with ceramics and other materials as a way of investigating objects through “successive experiments with strategies for placement, arrangement, and organization.” Harrow’s installations reference both “art historical compositions and vernacular spaces: game fields, farms, domestic interiors, forests. These spaces share abstract forms: planes, mesh-works, surfaces, and hierarchies.” Del Harrow was featured in the recent “Overthrown” ceramics-focused exhibit at the Denver Art Museum and has exhibited and been awarded residencies worldwide, including at the Archie Bray Institute in Montana. Harrow currently teaches at Colorado State University , Fort Collins. For more information, visit www.delharrow.net

Jerry Morris creates complex installations involving multiple clay and mixed-media components which when combined have tremendous impact on the viewer. Morris is creating an entirely new site-specific work for this exhibit. Morris received his BFA from  the University of Colorado Boulder and was recently awarded a residency at Anderson Ranch Arts Center, where he created the installation for the CERAMICA exhibit.  For more information, visit www.jerrywaynemorris.com

Elaine K. Ng‘s work “explores ideas of impermanence, transition, and the uncomfortable space between destinations-those moments after leaving what once was, before arriving at what will be.” Ng’s site-specific installations employ a spare but lush visual lexicon, communicating incredibly evocative ideas using simple clay, string and fibers. Ng is currently completing her MFA at Cranbrook Institute of Arts, Bloomfield Hills, Mich. For more information, visit www.elainekng.com.

Mark Wong‘s conceptual “1,000 Crane Platters” project highlights his penchant for dimensional and output challenges with clay, a twist on his own cultural tradition of folding and dispersing 1,000 origami cranes. An installation of 1,000 hand-thrown clay platters will cover the walls from floor to ceiling and even wrap around into the adjoining Cultural Office of the Pikes Peak Region space. At the close of the exhibit, the 1,000 ceramic platters will be dispersed to collectors all over the world.

GOCA is a regional hub of contemporary art, culture, and conversation. By featuring world-class artists, hosting artist and expert talks, and offering meaningful events UCCS students, faculty, staff and Pikes Peak Region community members are engaged in contemporary culture and life. GOCA features two galleries , one founded on the UCCS campus in 1982 and a satellite opened in 2010 in the Plaza of the Rockies building.

The University of Colorado Colorado Springs, located on Austin Bluffs Parkway in Colorado Springs, is one of the fastest growing universities in the nation. The University offers 36 bachelor’s degrees, 19 master’s and five doctoral degrees. UCCS enrolls about 9,800 students on campus annually and another 2,000 in online programs. For more information, visit www.uccs.edu.