The Elizabeth Harris Gallery is pleased to announce in the moment, a show of recent ceramics by Elisa D’Arrigo. In this exhibition, her 10th with the gallery, D’Arrigo continues to consider the possibilities for integrating painting, drawing, improvisational process and animated sculptural form within the context of the ceramic vessel.
The works begin as variously sized hollow and hand-built cylindrical forms that the artist then manipulates and combines while wet, in a period of intense activity. The “postures” that result allude to the body in a gestural and even visceral manner. They exude a figural presence, and their hollowness evokes the notion of interiority, and animation from within. The artist has stated that she is compelled by the way we inhabit and imagine our bodies from the inside out, and by the psychological and corporeal aspects of containment. The inside creates the outside, and visa versa.
D’Arrigo’s penchant for in the moment decisions yields forms that seem surprising, yet oddly familiar. The works convey the intrinsic humor of unexpected asymmetries merged with densely glazed “surfaces that run with an impossible wealth of color, pattern and texture...Variously nubby and scaly, striated and pocked, the resulting surfaces evoke polished gemstones, luster glass, patterned knits and flesh both tender pink and charred, mineral black.” (Excerpted from accompanying catalog essay by Nancy Princenthal).
Princenthal describes the works as a “series of alarmingly potent little ceramic figures that engage our propensities for reverie, humor and, perhaps most satisfying, deep human recognition.” D’Arrigo’s work is included in the collections of The Mead Art Museum, The High Museum of Art, The Samuel Dorsky Museum of Art, The Mint Museum of Art and Design, The Weatherspoon Art Museum, and Dieu Donne Papermill. Reviews of her work have appeared in several publications including Hyperallergic, The New York Times, Art in America, ArtNews, Sculpture, Partisan Review, ArtPapers, and The New York Observer.