Nancy Selvin Studios 

Nancy Selvin Studios 

Katie Swan  

Katie can be found at her studio space in the Lake Merritt District in Oakland, California. She grew up in Southern California and fell in love with ceramic art in high school. After studying Sociology and Political Science at UCLA and competing on the track team she traveled to Denmark to work as an artist assistant. As a mostly self-taught artist she finds her inspiration from movement. When observing any movement, from the grass blowing in the wind, to the fluidity of a belly dancers body, curves, rifts, valleys, landscapes all tell a story of where that thing has been and the enjoyment in the imagery.

The connection between how the human body moves and nature is fascinating. An individual can take raw earth, add fire to form something that can have an impact on a human life, it's our history, its creation. Clay is something that one can learn from every time you work with it, not just about the creative process, but about the self. It is a material that you can push to do amazing things yet are confined and she enjoys playing with the dance between the two. Artist States: “Working with clay is a dynamic experience and in the forms that I made I always need to be moving around them and observing the movement this the sculpture.”

 

What medium do you work in and why?

You can take raw earth add fire and form something that can have an impact on a human life, it's our history, it's creation. Not saying that that all potters are God or anything... Clay is something that I learn from every time I work with it, not just about the creative process, but about myself.  It is a material that you can push to do amazing things yet are confined and I enjoy playing with the dance between the two.

Another reason is that when you get an opportunity to teach ceramics people react in a unique way with clay.  To watch a student who may be struggling in other subjects, or an adult who has difficulty expressing an emotion, take a lump of clay and mold it into something they can hold and use can give a refreshing sense of worth.

What inspires your artwork?

Motion.  When I observe any movement, from the grass blowing in the wind, to the fluidity of a belly dancers body.  Curves, rifts, valleys, landscapes all tell a story of where that thing has been and I enjoy imaging that story.   The connection between how the human body moves and nature is fascinating to be. I believe that is why I love traveling and dancing to much that it becomes a form of meditation for me.  Often I am dancing around the studio listening to www.fatberris.com, an epic DJ from Copenhagen.  Working with clay is a dynamic experience and in the forms that I made I always need to be moving around them and observing the movement this the sculpture.

What is your artwork about?

My work is about that exploration in shapes and textures found in nature and the human body.  Why do we find specific forms enticing, as if we may have seen them before.

How do you want the viewer to respond to your work?

I wish to the viewer to contemplate why a specific piece catches their attention and give it time.  In our society we are inundated with images and stimulation and we always wanting to understand instantly, but their can be a peace with slowing the mind down.  I hope that my ceramic work is able to help do that.

Info to purchase/see work (website, etc.)

www.instagram.com/katieswanceramics

www.facebook.com/katieswanclay

 

Exhibition History

2016    Ruth Bancroft Scultpure Garden Show. Walnut Creek, CA. Group Show

2016    Double Take. Clay By The Bay Gallery. San Francisco, CA. Two Person     

2015    Annual Art Auction. Berkeley Art Center Auction. Berkeley, CA. Group Show  

2015-2016     ACCI Gallery. Berkeley, CA. Group Show

2015    Ruth Bancroft Scultpure Garden Show. Walnut Creek, CA. Group Show

2015    Diamond Mine. Trainhole Studios. Oakland, CA. Group Show

2015    Verum Ultimum Gallery. Tributary. Portland, OR. Group Show

2015    Dab Gallery. Neoteric International. Ventura, CA. Group Show

2015    City Art Gallery. San Francisco, CA. Group Show

2015    City Art Gallery. San Francisco, CA. Group Show

2015    City Art Gallery. City Scape. San Francisco, CA. Group Show

2015    City Art Galley. San Francisco, CA. Group Show

2015    City Art Galley. San Francisco, CA. Group Show

2015    Studio 110 Projects. Paint it Black. Sausalito, CA. Group Show

2015    Cabrillo Gallery. 12x12x12. Aptos, CA.  Group Show

2015    City Art Gallery. Freak Show. San Fransisco, CA. Group Show

2015    Verum Ultimum Gallery. The Living Mark. Portland, OR. Group Show

2015    The Celebration of Craftswomen 2014. San Francisco, CA. Group Show

Teaching Experience

2016                  Clay By The Bay. Ceramic Instructor and Studio Manager.

                                  San Francisco CA

2013-2016           Fusion Academy San Mateo. Wellness and Art Teacher.                                                  San Mateo, CA.

2014                     Kids N' Clay. Ceramics Instructor.  

                                    Berkeley, CA  

2011-2014              Ceramic Teacher Assistant. Yorba Linda High School.

                                    Orange County, CA. 

Artist Assistant

Nancy Selvin

Erin McGuiness

Whitney Smith

Sarah Kersten

Mark Baugh-Sasaki

Mette Maya Gregenson DK

Claude Assange DK

Gregory Hamilton Miller DK

Dorte Friis DK

ACGA Member