My current works are titled NEW VISIONS which is a continuation of the images, but to provide the inspiration for the creation of individual works. This influence subtle for now continues to influence this work from a distance. This work places emphasis on the container forms and has photographic roots in France, as far back as the mid 1800's when vitrified photographs on porcelain were developed and widely used. I grew up with a like for Abstract Expressionism and this still provides a base for my work. I try to capture in the fired work, that moment in the clay when it is soft and malleable. My images are arranged and repeated to convey private thoughts that seldomly are pointedly direct. They are purposely ambiguous. I am willing to allow viewers to create their own narratives when viewing this work. The pictorial surfaces are intended to be richly worked with a seemingly infinite number of marks and images often superimposed upon one another.
Above all I try to remember that,
"CERAMICS IS JUST AN EXCUSE TO START A FIRE"
NEW VISIONS TECHNIQUES:
My new visions vessels and tea pots are slab constructed from a cone 10 porcelain that is decorated by silk screening a black slip onto a cast plaster slab.
The silk screen images are placed on the screen that has been coated with a water resistant emulsion. The half tone images are family nostalgia as well as pictures of socially relevant issues.
The process begins by screening very thin black porcelain slip onto the plaster that has been cast onto a piece of glass allowing for very detailed prints. Overprinting, erasing, image enhancing as well as brushing additions can be made to create a layering of images.
Porcelain slip is poured over the decorated slab and built up with a brush until the proper thickness is achieved (1/16th or less.) The thin slab is pealed up with the aid of compressed air. Slab building techniques restrict the pieces.
EDUCATION: 1962 B.A. Southwestern State University, Weathereord, Oklahoma 1964 Graduate Study--Texas Tech. University, Lubbock, Texas 1970 M.F.A. (Ceramics) Arizona State University, Tempe, Arizona ADDRESS: 2097 Valley View Boulevard El Cajon, CA 92019 (619) 447-6504
Les Lawrence was born and educated through high school in Texas. After receiving his B.A. degree in commercial art and pursuing a career as a technical illustrator, found that a fine arts direction seemed more challenging. After completion of two years of graduate work at Texas Tech. University, he was appointed to establish the ceramics and sculpture program at Hardin-Simmons University in Abilene, Texas. Arizona State University was selected for an M.F.A. degree in ceramics and after completion of the degree, along with a teaching assistantship, he was appointed to his present position as head of the Ceramic Department, Grossmont College, El Cajon, California. He has also served as co-chair of the N.C.E.C.A. (National Council on Education for the Ceramic Arts) San Diego 1993 Conference. As a practicing professional artist, Les Lawrence has exhibited in over 160 national and international exhibitions. Notables include: Smithsonian Traveling Exhibit of Southern Sculpture; California Ceramicsand Glass, Oakland Museum; Baroque, Museum of Contemporary Crafts, New York; Les Lawrence, the Elaine Horwitch Gallery, Scottsdale, Arizona; California Crafts IX, Crocker Museum, California; Marietta College Crafts National, Marietta, Ohio; California Design XX, Pacific Design Center, Los Angeles, California; Americana, San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, San Francisco, California; 100 Artists 200 years, Xerox Center, New York; Photo/ Synthesis, Herbert F. Johnson Museum of Art, Ithaca, New York; The Great American Foot, Museum of Contemporary Crafts, New York; Viewpoint, Texas Tech. Museum, Texas Tech. University. Lawrence is represented in numerous public and private collections including: Sheraton Hotels, LosAngeles; Epson Corporation, California; Phoenix Art Museum; E. B. Crocker Museum of Art,Sacramento, California; Western Washington University; The Whitty Museum, San Antonio, Texas; Utah State University. Honors include numerous purchase awards in exhibitions along with Who's Who listings in AmericanArt, the West, and International Who's Who in Education. Called on to lecture and demonstrate, Lawrence has proven to be a popular speaker. Lectures and workshops, to list a few, have been conducted at University of California, San Diego; N.C.E.C.A. (Extruders), Atlanta, Georgia; N.C.E.C.A. (Viewpoint Ceramics: The Photographic Image) New Orleans; California Poly University; Texas Tech.University; Georgia State University; University of North Dakota; The Phoenix Art Museum; Pacific Lutheran University; San Jose State University; Long Beach State University; Arizona University; Arizona State University; Third International Clay Art Workshop in Korea; Korean Modern Ceramic Arts Association; The New Zealand Society of Potters' tour of seven New Zealand cities. Reviews and photographs have appeared in: Ceramic: Art and Perception; American Crafts; Ceramic Monthly; TAXI Magazine; Los Angeles Times Magazine; Eastern Review Photographs of Lawrence's work appear in such books as Susan Wechsler's Low Fire Ceramics; Images in Clay Sculpture, by Charlotte F. Speight; The Ceramic Spectrum, by Robin Hopper. Lawrence is known, in his earlier work, as one of the innovators in the use of Photo-Silkscreen Imagery. Large platters were decorated with photo silkscreen images of Indians. His current works return to the photo image in a unique transfer mono-print technique that produces multi-image cast slabs that are formed in translucent porcelain into sculptural vessels. These vessels depict some thoughts about socially relevant issues of the 1990's. They utilize a variety of found images including Mechanical, Electronic, Art Historical, Native American, as well as nostalgic family photographs as subjects.
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