An avid tea drinker, Gary created this collection in early 2022.
I live in a part of upstate New York surrounded by the movement of water with an incredible number of waterfalls spilling out of gorges that have been worn away by time. The woods are lush with a variety of flora and fauna which are a perfect counterpart to the varied terrain found in this Finger Lakes Region. I am nestled on a hilltop where my wife and I built our solar home, created gardens and an orchard and raised our children, as I explored my identity through my work as a visual artist and teacher.
During the school year, I taught drawing, painting, ceramics and studio arts to middle and senior high students in Ithaca, as the only art teacher in this democratic, alternative public school. My students were with me from 6th grade until they graduated high school. I used the class room space as my studio, making an environment where art is created through a process of communication and interaction.
My work with ceramics started in the 80’s and has been a constant source of inspiration and creativity. I am continually looking at the natural world that surrounds me and exploring methods to reflect the textures and colors that are so abundant in my region. As an oil painter, my compositions, contrasts and varied textures are concepts I incorporate into my ceramics. My love of growing plants and my affinity towards tea ceremony, have been the two areas in which I have directed my functional ceramic pieces both visually and texturally.
My one of a kind ceramic pieces are subject to the elements of fire and my creative spontaneity which create unique transformations. I alter the piece as I mold the clay and feel the movements, allowing the clay to ‘speak’ to me and learn it’s nature. I work with a variety of clay bodies which have different temperaments and colors, each one reacting differently to the applied stains and glazes on the dried body of the form. In this manner, each piece of pottery that I make is a reflection of the variety of stone, tree and landscape in which I walk.