Mary Barringer

 "New Forms"

November 4,2016 - December 23,2016

 

For our November and December exhibition, we are pleased to present “New Forms”, the work of ceramic artist Mary Barringer. Barringer grew up in rural Pennsylvania and began her art studies at Bennington College in Vermont. Her lengthy career in ceramics has included making figurative sculpture, functional pottery, and currently, hand-built forms and vessels. In addition, she was the editor of the prestigious ceramics journal, Studio Potter” for 10 years. Her time is now devoted exclusively to her studio practice.

Barringer studied at Bennington College which at the time, offered “alternative viewpoints.” She began making figurative sculpture, but her attention shifted towards functional ceramics when she was introduced to the ideas of Clement Greenberg. This noted art critic articulated a concept of medium specificity. In defining modernism, Greenberg suggested that there was a hierarchy within the world of art making. Each artistic pursuit had its own medium, and this differentiated the fine arts from the applied arts. Barringer abandoned figurative sculpture and began to pursue making useable ceramics and developing a context within which these objects fit into late 20th century homes.

Barringer’s current studio practice is hand-building both functional and non-functional objects. She is motivated by an ongoing investigation of how to articulate her passion for language by making marks on the surface that are highlighted with ceramic pigment. “I seem to be a straddler: someone who is curious about, and comfortable in, the places where different worlds, skills, and conversations overlap. In clay I feel lucky to have found the ideal material: generous yet demanding, inviting and recording the mark of every hand, idea, and technology that humans have impressed upon it.”

Mary Barringer’s exhibition “New Forms” opens with a First Friday November 4 artist reception from 6-9pm.  On Saturday November 5th at 10am, Mary will present a slide program and talk about her work. Her presentation, “Time and Materials” will be an overview of her 40 year studio practice, and focus on the interplay between evolving ideas and process.  Both Gallery events are free and open to the public. This exhibition will be on display through December. Gallery hours are Thursday through Saturday, noon to 5pm and by appointment. Plinth Gallery is located in Denver’s River North Art District at 3520 Brighton Blvd. Visit our website, www.plinthgallery.comor call the Gallery for further information.