TIM ROWAN | TRANSITIONS
October 15 - November 12
My art work flows from a basic desire to find and create meaning in my life. It is fueled by questions I ask myself concerning the realities I am confronted with. Process is essential to my work and begins with the medium of clay itself. Investigating and using clays from the local area locates me in a specific place and serves to bring to my awareness time as manifest in the moment. Working with raw clay and prospecting in the natural environment serves to keep me in tune with an earth centered and geologic time. The forming process, working on multiples and repetitively, is not unlike growth in nature. Clay must be worked at its own pace as its moisture is slowly evaporating regardless of the demands from outside. Firing functions in a similar way. The wood kiln must be slowly stoked for 7 days if the work is to be successfully transformed from clay to cultural artifact. The forms that my works take on are simple. They rely on a minimum amount of information and detail. They are constructed with a language of subtly, understatement, and restraint. In contrast to the majority of objects and images that we are bombarded with in our contemporary society they do not easily stand out or compete for attention and in this respect require the viewer to actively slow down. They have the capacity to be engaging on different levels and this is best accomplished when one allows the work to reveal itself over time. Utilitarian objects also require physical participation, such as drinking a cup of tea. These rituals of use are also embodiments of time. When I experience real joy I am aware of my mortality and the preciousness of the moment.
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This is an exhibition on an innovative period in the artist’s life brought about by a new studio and different clay bodies. This body of work and period of time represent rejuvenation, akin to a fresh vehicle for art and self-expression.
Tim Rowan typifies the generation of ceramic artists who have a deep understanding of ceramic making traditions, yet is constantly transforming and seeking new ways of expression through the clay medium. As a mid-career artist, Rowan has a profound maturity in his approach in life and art. He is concerned with the overly stimulated ’social media’ generation hence seeks a contemplative visual aesthetic with thought and substance.
Rowan’s life and work have been consistently informed by his apprenticeship with the inventive Japanese master Ryuichi Kakurezaki. Like Kakurezaki, he is known to speak in his own artistic language. None is more evident than in his new sculptures and vessels where his own contemporary style and forms really shine through.