Experimenting Texture by Leah Kaplan

The story

Leah Kaplan: For as long as I can remember, I have been curating found objects — from beach stones to vintage glass bottles to just about anything that can be grouped and artfully arranged. Through clay, I invent my own collections. I create and play with different groupings, paying close attention to how arrangements affect relationships between individual objects, as well as to the overall whole. Arranged one way, a set of vessels might conjure a cityscape or landscape. Positioned another way, the same pieces can appear more anthropomorphic, suggesting familial relationships or even emotional states.

Manipulating light and shadow

Leah Kaplan: At the same time, I am equally fascinated by the opportunities porcelain presents for manipulating light and shadow. I could spend my career investigating its translucent properties alone. But I also like experimenting with texture, which often flows back into my interest in collections. I use texture to unify diverse elements, as well as to inject dynamism and visual interest into groupings listing toward uniformity.

Influences

Leah Kaplan: My influences include the natural world and architecture, as well as ceramic artists Rudolf Staffel and Mary Rogers. Other craft mediums also inform my work. I have had the good fortune to meet and work with gifted artisans in the U.S. and internationally, as the director of a small nonprofit devoted to safeguarding indigenous craft traditions.
Basketry, paper and textiles, with their age-old materials and practices rooted in cultures across the globe, particularly inspire me.

Interview with Leah Kaplan

Trends: Structuralism.

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