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Welcome to the Clay & Glass blog of Meagan Chaney Gumpert! We hope you enjoy your time here!
Thursday, May 31, 2012

Newest Wall Sculptures - Spring 2012

Is tomorrow really, June 1st? Where does the time go?

In late March I was contacted by Harris Warren Gallery in Wake Forest, NC and arrangements were quickly made for a June exhibition. Well, here we are - Goodbye Spring. Hello Summer. It's been a whirlwind, but I'm proud to say that I completed 4 new wall sculptures for my show "Variegated Disposition" opening next Friday, June 8, 2012.


Anthocyanin, earthenware, 27” x 38” x2", May 2012
Continuation, earthenware, 31" x 35" x 2", May 2012

Dissipate, earthenware, 30" x 12" x 2", May 2012
Provide, earthenware and cast glass, 27" x 15" x 2", May 2012

 In addition to these, I'll also have 4 other works on exhibit. If you're in the area, please stop by.

Oh yeah, and there's one other work in progress...
 Baby #2 (aka "Peanut") is due in September.

What an exciting Spring it's been indeed! Now onto surviving the hot Summer months of Florida!

Cheers!
Meagan 
Meagan. Chaney Gumpert
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Monday, January 17, 2011

Baby Steps towards a Big Commission

Well, I brushed the cobwebs of my newly acquired "mommy-brain" and headed down to the studio for a couple hours yesterday.

I have a large commission due the end of April, and it's time to get started on it!

Normally, a ceramic and glass wall sculpture this size would take me about 6-8 weeks. Since I will now be squeezing work time in during Cooper's naps, between feedings, on the weekends, or when my in-laws come down next week to babysit (Thank you Betsy and Al!), I've broken my tasks down into smaller, more manageable sizes.

My goal yesterday was to sketch the piece to size. Check! (It's about 3 feet high and 8 1/2 feet long - my design wall is only 6'.)
And make the paper patterns. Check!
The next phase of the project will be to roll out the clay slabs. Two slabs will be cut from each paper pattern - one for the back of the piece, and one for the domed/puffy front.

I figure I can get one, maybe 2 patterns cut out during one of Cooper's (brief, ugh!) naps.

Ok, off to get some sleep while I can. Thanks for reading!

Cheers!
Meagan. Chaney Gumpert
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Tuesday, July 07, 2009

Museum Exhibit -The Photos are Back!

Sunday was the official closing of my exhibit at the Appleton Museum. I've had a busy month of travel (literally out of town the last 4 weekends in a row!) so I feel like the exhibit was just installed yesterday! How quickly a month passes.

Thought I'd share a few pictures and my artist statement for those of you who couldn't make it by the Appleton. (Photos by Russell Martin Photography)

In and urban setting, nature is often organized and controlled. City parks, botanical gardens, arboretums, and courtyards contrast industrial concrete and steel, allowing us to reconnect with nature. The plants selected are colorful, clean and fragrant, producing a manicured and idealized environment.
My current work explores and celebrates the city garden and our urban scenery. The goal is to stylize botanical forms by creating simplified shapes that reflect the organization of a planned city landscape.
For many, the simple act of gardening provides a welcome respite from everyday urban life. Overall, I strive to recreate feelings of comfort and harmony through composition, color and texture.

Thanks for reading. Hope you enjoyed the quick, online museum tour.
Meagan. Chaney Gumpert
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Friday, May 29, 2009

Planning an Exhibition Layout

Well, I'm happy to report that all of the artwork for my show at the Appleton Museum is finished, boxed, and ready for pick up! Installation begins Sunday afternoon. Due to the fact that the Museum is currently without a Curator, I have been given the task of designing the exhibition layout as well as assist with installation.

One of the best things I ever did throughout college and the years immediately following was work at various art galleries. If you can work part time in a gallery, I highly recommend it! Not only is it a fun place to work, the skills you'll learn are indispensable! Everything from how to submit a clear, professional exhibition proposal to shipping artwork to PR/marketing to techniques for making labels and properly hanging a show. As an artist, I found it endless helpful to know how things "worked" from the "other side."

So, when I was told that I would be the curator my show at the Appleton, I did not panic. Rather, I simply called upon another set of learned skills.

I do not have a fancy Computer Aided Design (CAD) program to help me render the layout in graphic 3D. Low-tech graph paper, colored pencils, and scotch tape worked just fine. Each sculpture was drawn to scale and cut out so that they could be easily arranged. Having an idea of where each piece is going to go, should help installation run much more smoothly. Stay tuned for more photos of the installation progress as well as the finished show. Thanks for reading and following along with me as I prepare for my first Museum exhibit!

Best,
Meagan
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Urban Bloom: Ceramic Sculptures by Meagan Chaney
June 5 - July 5, 2009
Appleton Museum of Art
Saturday, June 6
1:30 - 2:30 Artist talk and Demonstration
3:00 - 5:00 - Opening Reception
Meagan. Chaney Gumpert
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Wednesday, May 06, 2009

New Wall Sculpture and Work In Progress

Here are a few more new and in-progress ceramic sculptures for my upcoming exhibition "Urban Bloom" at the Appleton Museum of Art. The Opening Reception is Saturday June 6th from 3 - 5pm. I will also be giving an Artist Talk and Hands-on-Demonstration just before the reception from 1:30 -2:30Scent of Childhood, Earthenware clay, 43" x 36" x 1"

Hearts Ease, earthenware clay, 33 x 20 x 1"

Patience, earthenware clay, 26 x 22 x 2"

Daybreak, earthenware clay, 24 x 16 x 1 1/2"

Anticipation, earthenware clay, 43" x 58" x 1"
(This piece was too large for my current photo set up, so I took this quick shot instead. The plan is to get installation shots at the Appleton next month.)

In-Progress, Untitled. Scale drawing taped to the design wall.

Thanks for reading and checking in on what's been happening in the studio! After my much-needed and overdue mental and physical break last week, things have been going great!

Cheers!
Meagan. Chaney Gumpert
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Thursday, April 16, 2009

New Ceramic Sculptures

Hi there! Sorry I've been away for awhile. My computer was in the shop recovering from a serious virus. Thankfully, I didn't lose any files, and things seem to be up and running smoothly!

Here are a few quick pictures of what I've been working on in the studio the past month for my June exhibit at the Appleton.
Honey Breeze, earthenware clay and steel; 30" x 25" x 1"


Generations, Earthenware clay, cast glass, 34' x 35" x 2"


Unfolded, Earthenware clay, 29" x 29" x 3"

Fresh Delivery, Earthenware clay, 24" x 20" x 1"

French Lily, Earthenware clay, 18" x 11" x 1"
That's it! Got to get back to the studio! Thanks for reading and checking out my new work.
Best,
Meagan. Chaney Gumpert
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Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Clay Slab Construction

Today, I thought I would briefly share the basic handbuilding techniques I use to make my Mini Sculptures. There are many different hand building methods and techniques for working with clay, but here are a few of my favorites...

Clay Tools Needed: rubber rib, scoring tool (or a needle tool), a rubber stylus, wooden rib, slip trailing bottle. All of my work is slab built from lowfire clay. Using a slab roller, I roll the clay out to 1/4" thickness. (Before I had a slab roller I used a rolling pin and 1/4" wooden dowels to keep the thickness even.)It occurred to me one day making biscuits, that the same process could be applied to my Minis. I now have biscuit cutters in a variety of sizes and the process is much, much quicker It also keeps the sizes more consistant. (Don't worry. These aren't the same cutters I use on the weekends for fresh parsley, rosemary and buttermilk biscuits.) Oh, I like the clay to be a little wetter than leather hard when I start work work with it.


Each mini is made up of 2 circular slabs. The base is 1/2 smaller than the top. A rubber rib is used to smooth the surface of the clay. I also like working ontop of fabric interfacing instead of canvus because the weave is finer and leaves the clay surface smooth. The top is then pinched into a small bowl-like shapeThe edges of the top and bottom are scored (aka scratched)......and a slip of the same clay body is brushed on help attach the two pieces. The top is placed ontop of the bottom, carefully working the seams together.
Using a wooden rib, I then go around the piece and smooth and attach the two pieces, conceiling the seam.
Fingers also are helpful...
Once the piece if formed, I use my rubber stylus to draw/carve decorative lines or veins.

Again, fingers are great for smoothing those lines.
Now, I leave the piece alone until it is leather hard and then incorporate slip trailing/stippling. More on that tomorrow - including the lowfire slip recipe I like to use.

If you have any questions, or other tips for clay slab construction, I'd love to hear from you!

Thanks for reading!
Meagan. Chaney Gumpert
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Tuesday, March 03, 2009

New Work - In Progress

After a frustrating studio week last week, I think my thoughts have settled down a bit. Whew! I'm feeling much more like myself now.

Here are a few images of the pieces I made while allowing myself to just "play" and enjoy the process. We'll see where they take me. I don't know about you, but for me it can be difficult at times to just create without being overly critical of my creations. Left and right brain interference.
The forms of this wall piece are more involved than my usual work and I incorporated some of the slip stippling that I have been doing on my Minis. I still want to push this idea further, and work on activating the negative space between the 2 forms a little more.

I'm also playing around with the idea of grouping my Minis into different configurations. Here's my first attempt at this.
I fired a bisque kiln off last night, and it's cooling now. It's mostly loaded with this new, experimental work, but there are a couple orders and a few pieces for the solo show I have at the Ocala Civic Theater in a few weeks. In the mean time, I'm switching back to glass work to finish up a few tile pieces. Pictures soon.

Off to the studio!
Meagan. Chaney Gumpert
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