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Current Exhibition > Past Exhibitions

Past Exhibitions - 2007

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  CLAY: The Ecstatic Skin of the Earth
When: October 13, 2007 - November 24, 2007
ARTIST’S TALK: Sunday, November 18th @ 4pm (Paulus Berensohn)
Where: Xiem Gallery

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Collection: Juried by Paulus Berensohn from national and international entries.

Xiem Clay Center is proud to present this unique exhibition of ceramic works selected by Paulus Berensohn, visionary artist, teacher and author, as its contribution to Pasadena's tri-annual Festival of Art and Ideas. The theme of this year's festival is Skin. From close to 400 pieces submitted for consideration, the above works were accepted.

  BROKEN BOUNDARIES: Transitions to Expressions
When: August 25, 2007 - September 22, 2007
GALLERY RECEPTION: Saturday, August 25, 6:00 - 8:00 pm
Where: Xiem Gallery

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Collection: BROKEN BOUNDARIES: Transitions to Expressions reflects the dynamics of iconoclasm and synthesis that characterize the ceramic work of Patrick Shia Crabb.

"The work on show represents a cross-section of my various paths takenover the past decades. In particular, with the shard series (vases/plates) and the temple series, the two paths crossed over("transitioned over") to the most current path with the shard figures series. The facial componentfrom the temples (architectural forms) was placed onto the shard bottles (already had a figurative quality), resulting in a new direction.

Each figure is now going thru transitions, with social commentary within the shard patterns. Conceptually, it's about the "beautiful life" reality (shard surface colors) that most of us enjoy, but periodically thru the media or thru personal tragedies "other realities" (not so nice) enter our perceptions. It's the yin-yang tug of life.As an artist I work with distinct techniques and multi-cultural ideas (mostly from archaic third-world countries) that are dear to me."

- Patrick Shia Crabb.
Artist(s) Bio: Patrick S. Crabb's clay vessel forms over the past 25 years have always been deeply rooted in ancient artifacts and their historical cultural backgrounds, such as prehistory Japanese Jomon wares, primitive African sculptures, Southwest American Indian art, and pre-Columbian ceremonial figurines.

For more information on Patrick S. Crabb and "Broken Boundaries"
visit his website:

  ACS-DC Jeanne Ward Foundation Emerging Artists Exhibit
When: July 28, 2007 - August 11, 2007
GALLERY RECEPTION: Saturday, July 28th, 6:00 pm - 8:00pm
Where: Xiem Gallery

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Collection: In support of Xiem Clay Center's commitment to furthering public awareness and appreciation of ceramic art, Xiem Gallery is hosting an exhibition presented by the American Ceramics Society - Design Chapter. This juried show comprises entries for the the ACS - DC Jeanne Ward Foundation Fund for Emerging Artists. Entry to the competition is limited to students currently enrolled in a junior college or university who are also members of The American Ceramics Society - Design Chapter of Los Angeles.

  MAKER AND COLLECTOR: The Poetics of Pottery
When: June 9, 2007 - July 21, 2007
GALLERY RECEPTION: Saturday, June 9th from 6:00 pm - 8:00pm
Where: Xiem Gallery

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Description: Illuminating the dialogue between makers and collectors of ceramics, this exhibition of recent works by San Francisco ceramic artist Christa Assad is presented in the context of reflective textual meditations from collector and author Richard Jacobs' series: "Letters to a Potter".
"Working within the timeline of ceramic history, my position comes humbly after centuries of past civilizations, whose technological developments and discoveries are still viable today. My education and formal training honors these cultures and their ceramic traditions, and places me in the context of contemporary American art.a culture wherein handmade pottery seems archaic, but somehow manages to endure. Bridging the gap between historic utilitarian vessels, and the pedestal art of our present culture is what I find most challenging. My ceramic aesthetic allows me to be inclusive in the exploration of contemporary approaches.I think of clay as a building material that can mimic any other, and my pots speak of architecture, car design, and other massive structures. No idea is too big or too small to investigate. The clay can always be recycled before the firing. Making pots provides a few very important things for me: discipline, including regular physical and mental exercise; a m easure of creativity and productivity; a role in history as artisan. The choice to pursue potting as a profession came as a bit of a surprise to me at first, but now seems the ideal solution to the puzzle of life. It satisfies the athlete, the academic, and the connoisseur in me alike. I can be my own boss, make my own inventory, and connect with those who buy and use my work. Along with the rewards, there are many lessons to be learned in patience, cooperation, and loss." - Christa Assad
Artist Bio: Christa Assad is a studio artist and co-owner of Verdigris Clay Studio + Gallery, in San Francisco's historic Cannery Building. Her interest in industrial design and architecture is revealed in functional, contemporary works that have been featured in Garth Clark's Shards , Kevin A. Hluch's The Art of Contemporary Pottery, and Lark Books' 500 Teapots and 500 Pitchers. Assad and her work most recently appeared aboard Artstream Nomadic Gallery at the 2007 NCECA conference, the American Pottery Festival at the Northern Clay Center, Minneapolis, MN, and Art of the Pot, in Austin, TX. She regularly presents workshops and visiting artist lectures at universities and art centers across the country.

To learn more about Christa Assad, visit her website:
"It is my hope that this exhibit will visually demonstrate the integral relationship between pottery and the memorable experiences of engaging pottery."Letters to a Young Potter" was the subject of an article in The Studio Potter, summer, 2004. My 72 letters to Christa Assad reflect the endemic issues of the collector and the maker, and the joys celebrated and difficulties encountered in the making and receiving of pottery." - Dr Richard Jacobs
Curator Bio: Dr. Richard Jacobs is a retired university professor and long time collector of antique and contemporary pottery from a number of cultures and countries.
"Letters to a Young Potter" was the subject of an article in 'The Studio Potter' ceramic journal, Summer, 2004 and Richard's letters and Christa's pottery were displayed at the Collectors Gallery at the Oakland Museum of California in March and April 2005. The letters were discussed in a panel presentation at the 2005 NCECA Conference in Baltimore and are to be published in book form this October by Kestrel Books Ltd, Tythegston, Wales, United Kingdom. The working title for the book is "Searching For Beauty: A Collector's Letters To A Studio Potter".

  Scholars' Stoneware and King EpiCai's Effigies
When: May 12, 2007 - June 12, 2007
GALLERY RECEPTION: Saturday, May 12th, 6:00 pm - 8:00pm
Where: Xiem Gallery

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Collection: Xiem Gallery is proud to present Scholars' Stoneware and King EpiCai's Effigies, an enigmatic collection of ceramic works by CSULA MFA candidates Geoffrey Tjakra and Douglas Blechner.

Scholars' Stoneware, Blechner's collection of bulbous rock-like forms, is inspired by Chinese 'scholar's stones' and Japanese Suiseki. Suggestive of the contained energy of natural forms, these coil built pieces function as objects of contemplation. Their rich surfaces evidence Blechner's mastery of glaze chemistry and application techniques.

In contrast to Blechner's restrained focus, Tjakra employs a variety of materials, forming techniques and firing temperatures to explore and celebrate the unlimited potential of the ceramics medium. King EpiCai's Effigies, his abundant creation of ritualistic ceremonial utensils for his contemporary personal Kingdom of EpiCai, references archeological artifacts and sites, and poses questions about definitions and hierarchies of value in contemporary culture.
Artist Bio: Douglas Blechner and Geoffrey Tjakra are current MFA graduate candidates at CSULA. Blechner began his study of ceramics in1988 at El Camino Community College and obtained his BFA in Ceramics in 1993 from CSULB. He worked as a potter and taught at various venues for more than 20 years before registering for his MFA.

Tjakra, (a.k.a. King EpiCai), is a multi-media artist, born in Jakarta, Indonesia. He has lived and studied in many different countries, receiving his BFA in Sculpture in 1994 from Rutgers University, New Jersey. After taking his first official ceramics class with Prof. Neil Moss in 2000, working with clay became an obsession for Tjakra, leading to his near completion of the MFA degree in June 2007. Douglas Blechner and Geoffrey Tjakra are both currently mentored by Prof. Luis Bermudez at CSULA. Both also credit the significant role Prof. Neil Moss has played in their education and development.

To learn more about Geoffrey Tjakra, visit his website:

When: April 7, 2007 - May 5, 2007
GALLERY RECEPTION: Saturday, April 7th, 6:00 - 8:00 pm
Where: Xiem Gallery

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Collection: Xiem Clay Center is proud to present Decadence and the Imperial, featuring ceramic works by Kevin A. Myers. In this selection, the artist contrasts the opulence of gold with the quietude of celadon in a series of small scale wheel thrown and altered forms, inspired by recent travels in Eastern Europe.

"Decadence and the Imperial is the result of a recent trip to Prague, Austria and Hungary; as well as an ongoing admiration for the Chinese celadon.

I spent a great deal of time in the cathedrals of Europe and was greatly affected by the spiritual decadence of gold. On the other hand, the quiet, transparent nature of a celadon glaze has a spirit all its own. The tactile versatility, permanence of material and historical value of clay are all reasons why I was inspired to create such a vastly different, yet obviously connected body of work."

- Kevin A. Myers.
Artist(s) Bio: Kevin A. Myers has maintained a ceramic studio since 1975. He earned his BFA and MFA degrees from Otis College of Art and Design. His work can be found in many private collections throughout the country as well as internationally. Kevin is Associate Professor of Art, Ceramics at Orange Coast College in Costa Mesa, California, where he is currently serving as Chair of the Art Department. He has also taught at the University of Southern California, University of California Los Angeles and California State University Northridge. Kevin is well versed in all areas of ceramics and as artist and educator has contributed significantly to the development of West Coast ceramics.

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