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Chris Salas

AICAD Fellow

Bio

Chris Salas (they/them) is an artist and educator primarily working in Ceramics. Their studio practice is a search for a particular mental state – the engaged and unconscious divergence and convergence of ideas that imbue themselves into objects. These objects become abstracted forms of personal experiences, relationships, conversations, research – all of which currently revolves around time, place, momentum, with a pervasive presence of the history of colonization of the Americas.

Chris received a BA in Chemistry from Michigan State University and an MFA in Ceramics from Cranbrook Academy of Art. They have completed residencies at Northern Clay Center in Minneapolis, MN, at Ceramics School in Hamtramck, MI, at Watershed Center for the Ceramic Arts in Newcastle, ME, and at Starworks Ceramics in Star, NC. In 2023, Chris will be attending a residency at Township10 in NC, and is a Visiting Artist at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago through the Association of Independent Colleges of Art and Design (AICAD) Post-Graduate Teaching Fellowship. 

Courses

Title Department Catalog Term

Description

This course will focus on developing beginning and continuing skills on the wheel. Students will be introduced to fundamental methods for using the wheel as a tool to create vessels with consideration of their meaning and consequence and stretch the boundaries of utility. In addition to the design and structure of functional objects, this course will familiarize students with the working properties of ceramic material, firing methods, and glazes. We will look at artists working both in traditional and non-traditional methods. Artists will vary, but some we will look at include: Edmund de Waal, Alleghany Meadows, Gerrit Grimm, Mike Helke, Steve Lee, and more. Readings will include articles covering topics about the convergence of fine art and craft, how objects affect our daily life and rituals, the place of craft within contemporary society. Specific authors may be : Chris Staley, Glenn Adamson, Jenni Sorkin, Okakura Kakuzo and Edmund de Waal Projects vary, but typically there are 5-6 assignments in the course with each assignment consisting of 3-20 pieces of finished work with additional research in glaze and firing processes. Students will also have readings and responsibilities with firing work.

Class Number

1847

Credits

3

Description

In their work students will consider the possibilities of 'multiples' as duplicate, copy, replica, counterfeit, translation, group, growth, repetition, representation, pattern making, modular system, edition, progression, mutation, doppelganger, imitation, clone, reproduction, sequence, symbolism, mass production, additions over time and more. What does it mean to create in Multiples? Why make so many at this point in time when we live in a world where we already have so many objects? These are just some of the questions that the class will take on. All techniques in conjunction with clay will be used in this class. However, there will be demonstrations on making multiple part molds and slip casting, jiggering, glaze and surface manipulation. Some artist that we will study in this course include Paul Cummins, Rachel Kneebone, Caroline Slotte, Susan York, Richard Shaw, Wendy Walgate, Alexandra Englelfriet, Edmund de Waal, Walter McConnell, Bonnie Kemske, Hella Jongerius, Belinda Blignaut, Janet Deboos, Gabriel Orozco, Alissa Volchkova, Dylan Beck. Readings will come from a variety of sourse some of which might include Thinking Through Craft by Glen Adamson, Vitamin C: Clay and Ceramic in Contemporary Art by Clare Lilley and CRAFT edited by Tanya Harrod, The White Road by Edmund De Waal. This course will allow students to create two self-directed projects. Students should to be able to produce a one and two part mold on their own upon the completion of this class.

Class Number

1149

Credits

3