A collaboration with ceramicist Eric Moss

Immediately I needed to share one thing that you simply may not find out about me. I’ve been a metallic sculptor for over twenty years, however surprisingly sufficient, a really giant proportion of the artists I comply with occur to be individuals who primarily work in ceramics and clay (considered one of them, is Eric Moss). I can’t say why precisely, however whereas I reside my inventive life amongst metallic, I’m disproportionately drawn to pottery and ceramic sculpture. 

Perhaps it is as a result of I discovered I’m allergic to dusty environments that my path took me into metallic as a substitute of clay. Both approach, regardless of my vocation of alternative, I’ve developed an incredible appreciation for the muddy arts. Provided that information, one may assume {that a} mud and metallic collaboration with one other artist was inevitable, and you’ll be proper…form of 

So whereas I wish to announce a collaboration between myself and fellow ceramic artist Eric Moss, the humorous twist is that my contribution to this mission won’t truly be made from metallic, will probably be wooden? Who would have thought? 

I ought to actually let Eric converse for himself as he’s the one doing the heavy lifting for this mission. Beneath are his ideas on the mission. 

From Eric:

“I first encountered Chris’ extraordinary artwork in 2018 within the Instagram posts of considered one of his collectors, who additionally occurred to be following my channel. He remarked on our similarity of appreciation in varieties (and even then dreamed of a collaboration). The core of my observe then was raku firing ceramics, a low-tech, quick and brutal course of with the tip consequence left very a lot to the whim of the kiln gods relatively than the artist – in my early years a lot of my output was misplaced to thermal shock breakages within the closing moments after firing. Raku, I assumed, could be too far faraway from Chris’ exact, managed and tight-tolerance work to contemplate a mixed art work?

Early in 2020, as Chris was making ready for launch of his ‘fear stone’ meld of metallic and wooden, and in mutual appreciation of one another’s work, we agreed an artswap. Chris despatched me a prototype fear stone in trade for considered one of my two-part, wheel-thrown raku-fired ‘squid’. By 2020 I had already branched out into slipcasting my ‘waveform’ sculptures in porcelain tile kind, pushed by the necessity economically to make similar items for tessellating wall arrays. So, when Chris posted a picture of a small assortment of ‘overrun’ machined unique wooden ‘jewels’ from his mission, and I mused how they could look offered in a ceramic mount, Chris despatched a dozen over to me within the UK to “have a play”!

The preliminary impression of Chris’ fear stone was chrysalis-like with the grooved wooden jewel showing just like the segmented underside of a beetle. So, I made a decision my ceramic mount may echo a beetle’s higher facet ‘elytra’ (or wing instances). However, nonetheless occupied in ‘oloid’ and ‘waveform’ manufacturing, I first tried the jewels in each modified oloids and waveforms, every given a brand new recess to accommodate the jewel. These Prototypes #1, #2 and #3 had the texture of seeds with the jewel forming the germ half and Instagram posts of them have been sparking curiosity and requests to amass. Prototype #3 ‘waveforms’ in Parian have the added enchantment of translucency in addition to tactility.

My early experiments prompted Chris to supply to advertise a attainable collaborative version, though he was nonetheless eager to see a prototype #4 of the ‘elytra’ that I’d first steered. I got down to attempt to make these and to make the means to batch produce all 4 prototype themes ought to every/any garner sufficient curiosity for manufacturing? The modified oloids (Prototypes #1 & #2), with my primitive making strategies, entailed so many hours of finessing that I elected to make them just for particular fee. I’m nonetheless investigating the technicalities of constructing the elytra in ceramic (growing a ‘slip injection course of’ utilizing plaster casts and kitchenalia) however current as a substitute a divergence into pewter casting of the carved cuttlefish variant ‘elytra’ which I believe works superbly. I rediscovered cuttlefish casting in 2019 and was eager to include it into my observe each in metallic and ceramic. Lead-free Pewter is a pleasantly heavy (and simply forged) metallic and it properly defines the expressed laminae of carved cuttlefish in a sensuous, tactile kind.“


As you possibly can learn, Eric went in fairly a number of instructions with this mission, and actually used it as a possibility to discover and develop into a spread of processes. I’ve loved exchanging messages with him over the past couple months as developments unfolded.

The extra I’ve realized about Eric’s work, the extra I see myself in it. His aesthetic instincts are fairly complementary to my very own, so it’s fascinating to see my small wood gems function a robust catalyst for his work. To have one thing I designed and machined juxtaposed with such a diametrically totally different medium is a useful method to replicate by myself course of and distinction the 2.

My craft is inherently exact, and Erics is rather more squishy, however they’ve extra in widespread than one may suppose. Ceramic work truly suits completely into one of many themes I discuss very often right here on this weblog.

Ceramics is without doubt one of the oldest industrial processes, And whereas it has taken many varieties all through historical past in lots of cultures, its transition to a definite modern positive artwork studio medium displays similarities with others crafts that share a utilitarian and ornamental custom.

Like wooden turning, glass making, and varied sorts of metallic work, it’s a course of whose main perform has (very slowly on this case) shifted from the utilitarian to inventive as expertise has modified. Whereas I’m wholly unclear on the timeline, one may level to the transition away from handbook ceramics manufacturing to industrial slip casting as the purpose the place the fashionable studio ceramics motion was actually in a position to take form. 

Time and again, once we see trade flip away from expert labor and towards expertise, these forged off abilities typically discover a new area of interest inside the positive arts. As a sculptor working with expertise, that story has at all times captivated me and it’s a nice level of intersection between what I do, and what Eric does. 

I believe this mission embodies all of that completely. 

So the subsequent query could be “Can I personal one?”

After all. As you may need guessed, we’re going to provide up this mission as an version. I can be making a spread of hardwood inserts for Eric, and he can be lovingly crafting a house for every of them.

In case you are a collector of my work, or Erics, and are excited by including considered one of these great artifacts to your assortment, merely click on the hyperlink beneath and every part it’s essential know needs to be there.  


I hope you take pleasure in this mission as a lot as I do, and as at all times, feedback and questions are at all times welcome.