Giving Pots A Whole New Meaning:
Birdie Boone is a potter who makes functional cups, bowls, and plates then stacking and arranging them into installtions across the globe. It's critical to recognize that Boone believes in the importance of ceramics and the incorporation of ulitarian use that potters face with their work. Boone tries to highlight the subtle "mistakes" (such as cracks, folds, and creases). She creates work that is relatable to every individual, but stacks and installs them in such a way that makes a bigger statement. Boone is a master of suble glaze colorations on her pieces.
The importance that Boone has for her work individually and as a set is a vital thing to recognize as an artist; it's important to realize this when working with series or multiples (which most contemporary artists do today). It's also critical for artists to learn at an early age how art can be simple, realistic in everday life but still be shown and exhibited as art.
Birdie Boone could be a center of a lesson based off of her simplicity, multiple uses for her work, the way she handles her pieces, and what she is trying to say in their installations. It's also important to include in a lesson that just because something can be "used" doesn't mean it can't be sculptural or more "artistic". Topics and questions that could revolve around Boone are:
"If my agenda as an artist is to call attention to important things, then what better way to deliver on this than by means of practical necessity? Our brains don’t have to work to figure out ‘what it means’. Meaning is absorbed through a pot’s characteristics as it is being used; even when it is not being used, it can affect its environment in a nurturing way." - Birdie Boone (1)
Is a potter an artist? How can making bowls, plates, and other forms of dinnerware be considered an art form?
What does Birdie Boone do to her pieces to make them "beautiful"/ "good" or even just considered art?
What is Birdie Boone trying to say in her installations? Are there deeper intentions behind her work besides just stacks of bowls and cups?
What are the suble cracks/ folds in her pieces saying to the viewer? It's important to recognize that a simple line can make such a difference on a work.
Shape, form, and color become extremely important decisions not only in her single pieces, but in her installations as a whole. Why do you think she chose the forms and/or "types" of pottery she did to make her statments?
This page was created off of a project titled "Yes, No Maybe?" where we had to illustrate and identify a lesson plan containing an artist or specific instructional material, and decide whether or not that instructional material was relevant for classroom instruction. The lesson material had to address either a specific audience (viewer, student, or teacher), characteristics of a phenomenon, and/ or relation to current issues.
Birdie Boone's work could be a great ceramic exploration for students at a higher elementary/ middle- high school age. She is a great demonstration of pottery work that can be exhibited and "art based" rather than solely being created for commercial production. Her suble details to each and every piece that makes one different from the next is also something for up and coming artists to take note and include in their own practice. It's important to recognize her abilty to take ceramics into another art realm such as installation, and to allow students to understand that they are not limited to one "medium" or field of study. Her intelligence on glazes, form, and intentions on each piece can also be topics of instruction for students. Because of the extensiveness in the details, possibilities, and techniques that Birdie Boone has, her work could definitely be a topic of instruction in an art class room. Or, more simply stated... YES!
*A graph that was pulled from Birdie Boone's website, illustrating her thoughts behind making the work she does (2).
Allen, J. (2013, February 4). jenallenceramics. jenallenceramics. Retrieved February 6, 2014, from http://jenallenceramics.wordpress.com/2013/02/04/birdie-boone-potter-of-the-month/
Boone, B. (n.d.). birdie boone ceramics.birdie boone ceramics. Retrieved February 6, 2014, from http://www.birdiebooneceramics.com