Some of us at DDSTUDIO were lucky enough to catch the community reception exhibition for ceramics artist, Josh Herman. His collection filled the Jacobs Library and Academic Center Gallery at the La Jolla Country School. We first met Josh at the Dwell design event in LA. Mirroring our values at DDSTUDIO, his passion for respecting every part of the creative process is certainly apparent, and is highlighted in his meticulously unique pieces.
The collection of work is entitled “Stack Studies: an exploration of process” and it runs until May 6th. It’s worth checking this out, and also seeing the school campus with it’s visible ceramics program. Great that Josh is giving these students insight into individuality and risk.
Josh has a profound interest in the natural progressions of the creative landscape. When he dives into a piece, he has no preconceived notion or bullet point plan. He prefers to watch the piece unfold before his eyes, as he lets go of his desire to tweak and shape the clay to his will. “I like watching the pieces reveal themselves,” he said.
The nature of ceramics lends itself to a particularly unique endeavor that demands a portion of evolving outside of total human control. As he mentioned, the process is about 75% his energy, and 25% of natural shaping. You never want to fully control the plastic clay and the effect of the firing always yields surprises (even after hundreds of glaze tests). This lends to an exciting variability every time he opens the kiln door. The clay speaks to him, and he listens intently with the powerful sensory engagement of the subconscious mind.
Artists require rituals that access a depth of being behind the daily active mind. Josh for instance spends lots of time tending to his garden to find a level of mindfulness where the natural growth of his succulents and fruit trees gives inspiration to the stacked forms in his artwork. The stacks build off each other, completing particular thoughts and feelings that contribute to a full collection of emotions and experiences.
Josh exhibits a passion that illuminates the nuanced integrity we see across the world of art and design. This fervor stems from the inherent power of authenticity, which sparks a clarity of mind – and brings a new appreciation of form and balance into our lives. Here is an example of one of his signature forms.
For more about Josh Herman’s art, visit his website.