Artist Exhibition Statement
Does every moment exist forever? What is it that compels us to preserve thoughts, memories and events? We search for our cameras and record every moment, compulsively, as if they may slip away before we even get the chance to experience them.
Ancient Sumerian culture used clay to keep track of items, counting, tallying, creating civilization’s first inventory. Clay has an innate ability to record marks, scratches, and impressions, and it is my intention to take part in that story through color, texture and imagery. Whether it be on functional forms, flat canvases or sculpture I intend to continue the narrative surrounding the relationship and dissonance between humans and their built and natural environments. Preserving both personal and universal experiences on clay surfaces seems to legitimize and celebrate every moment.
I find comfort in physics, in that research is confirming that the multiple dimensions that surround us may very well support every moment in time. It seems both magical and a relief that each story we experience as humans may always exist forever, especially when change is the only constant.
About the Artist
Shanna Fliegel grew up in northwest New Jersey. Only 50 minutes outside the city and a short hike from the Appalachian Trail, her early experiences shaped a love for both urban spaces and the natural environment. Leaving NJ to attend James Madison University in Harrisonburg, VA in 1997 functioned as a significant catalyst into the field of ceramics. The beauty of the Shenandoah Valley permeated her perspectives and work.
After earning her BFA in Studio Art she accepted a year-long residency at the Cub Creek Foundation in Appomattox, Virginia. Her experiences and relationships here strengthened Shanna’s background in wood-firing, native clays and surface. Shanna received her MFA in Studio Art from Southern Illinois University, Edwardsville in 2009 and taught as Assistant Professor of Art at Montana State University, Billings from 2010-2014. Currently, she lives in Byfield, Massachusetts where she teaches art and ceramics at the Governor’s Academy.
The Tracing Situations exhibition may be seen at the Morean Center for Clay; gallery hours are Thursday thru Saturday 10 am to 5 pm