KATHARINE  EKSUZIAN


Studio artist at the Northern Clay Center in Minneapolis, MN.

Recipient of the 2018 Red Wing Collectors Society Foundation Award

A few years ago, I took my first clay class and instantly knew I had found my true calling and became determined to polish my skills to professional standards.  Being an artist, there is always a need to create, but being able to do it in a way that has a positive impact is the true challenge and is the foundation of my work.


ARTIST STATEMENT

I create atmospheric fired ceramics inspired by nature.

Umami is an over-all harmonious state of perfection.  It is where ingredients come together forming a pleasingly consistent whole.  It is not just a taste, it is a state of mind.  Deliciousness.  I long to have a sense of umami in my work of pottery.  Each piece is unique, complex, satisfying and a pleasure to use.

My current ceramic work focuses on nature-related sculptural pieces that are also functional.   Each piece portrays balance, harmony and captured moments, while simultaneously serving a greater purpose.   Designing unique cremation urns has been a great achievement in my ceramic studies.  They not only fulfill a functional intention, but benefit the bereaved on a more spiritual basis.   

Shinrin-yoku, a Japanese term that means “taking in the forest atmosphere”, has been very influential in my clay work.  There is evidence that this type of nature therapy improves both physical and mental health.  Through the creation of nature-inspired ceramic work, I hope to elicit a sense of shinrin-yoku and impart a pleasantness onto the beholder. When direct and prolonged contact with nature is not accessible, it is my hope that a special woodland art piece will evoke a similar calm spirit. 

I strongly believe in hand sculpting each piece to fully reflect the realistic, beautiful imperfections that my main subjects are based upon.  The placement of a sculpture on its corresponding vessel is also a well-thought-out task. With great effort and proficiency, my goal is to create innately organic impressions and intuitive pieces that portray balance and harmony. 

By recalling nature experiences as I create, I impart a bit of myself and the woods into each piece.  It is a great pleasure to see when a carefully planned and crafted piece takes on a life of its own. In atmospheric firing, the end results are always different with each piece. The act of changing the climate within the kiln, along with the infusion of ash, assists in a unique, natural aesthetic. When my work reaches the hands of its owner/user, I hope it bestows an insight into the goodness of life. 



Gong Yoo, my Maine Coon mascot checking out the home studio

Gong Yoo, my Maine Coon mascot checking out the home studio

NCC small soda fire kiln

NCC small soda fire kiln

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Using an electric kiln to prefire (bisque)

Using an electric kiln to prefire (bisque)


Loading the NCC large soda kiln

Loading the NCC large soda kiln

Wood fired kilns in St.Joseph,MN

Wood fired kilns in St.Joseph,MN

NCC Studio Space

NCC Studio Space