with Carol Long
Melding the decadence of Art Nouveau and the whimsy of Alice in Wonderland, artist Carol Long (previously) transforms humble clay vessels with an array of small spheres, curled handles, and densely laid stripes. Her ornamental works begin with simple, wheel-thrown shapes that are pushed, bent, and warped into swelling forms evocative of organic material or more representational subject matter like a deer or mushroom. Long then uses slip trailing and an elaborate glazing process to add a staggering amount of embellishment to the amorphous sculptures, mimicking the patterns, textures, and colors found throughout the natural world.
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Meticulous Sculptures by Artist Carol Long Highlight the Curved Lines and Colorful Embellishments Found in Nature
Honoring the humble shape of the vessel is at the center of Carol Long’s practice. From her studio in rural Kansas, the artist throws simple ceramic cylinders that she contorts into supple butterfly wings, curved chrysalises, or vases with embellished handles.“When it comes off the potter’s wheel, that’s just the beginning,” she tells Colossal. “I usually sit for a second and look at the piece and see which way I can push it out or in.”
The resulting forms are evocative of both flora and fauna and traditional pottery, although Long’s sculptures emphasize smooth, sinuous walls and squiggly bases rather than angled edges. She uses slip trailing to add tactile decorative elements to the piece like small spheres, handles, or raised linework. “The relationship between the glazes that are inside the vectors, the shapes made by the slip trailing, are really important in how they’re divided and how they sit next to each other,” she says, noting that the process is particularly meticulous because it involves applying the material to each intricate, ribbed pattern and delicate outline.
Whether a vase or wide-mouthed jar, the whimsical sculptures are brimming with color and textured details. “I love the flowing lines, and I love the idea of framing a picture on my pots. A lot of times I have a focal point like an animal or insect and then I’ve framed it with other designs,” the artist says.
Long is hosting an annual open house at her studio next month and will show a body of work at Charlie Cummings Gallery in July of 2022. Until then, shop available pieces on Etsy—she also has an update slated for mid-December—and follow her latest pieces on Instagram. (via Women’s Art)
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Highlights below. For the full collection click here.