aroundkent Magazine Vol 13 2017

Page 6

Visual Art


The role of craft is an important part of the work of many contemporary artists. It involves skill and knowledge, with a special concern for materials. While it may be true that a high level of craft itself is not an adequate marker for merit in art, it is also true that when especially well-made objects serve as a means to a substantial artistic end, the results can be particularly rich and meaningful. The three artists featured here achieve such ends in the media of wax and graphite powder sculptures, high-tech weaving, and glass constructions.

K A T E The intricate sculptures of Akron artist Kate Budd are diminutive in scale and possess a magnetic pull on the viewer to observe closely. The forms are finely-crafted, self-contained worlds of associative meanings with implications that lead to calm and contemplative responses. There is a sense of mystery at work as well, due to the sense that what is being observed is at once familiar and alien. Questions arise as to the source of the forms and how they are made. Are these representations of forms with a specific origin? Are they hybrids of some sort? Is the material stone- or steel-like, or something more delicate? These thoughts generally remain suspended in a poetic realm of esthetic appreciation, but perception can be affected by learning that the materials used are most often simply wax and graphite powder. The sculptures can trigger connotative connections both to relics of the past and artifacts of a somewhat futuristic nature. They reference human anatomy and plant biology, functional objects and mineral formations.

volume 13 | 2017 •


dark cowrie wax and graphite powder, 1.5 x 2 x 1.5�, 2014


Mark Keffer KSU Class of ‘88