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In viewing the 20-minute “Clay Figures, Animals, and Landscapes” DVD, I was fascinated with the various ceramists’ artworks. As I listened to the dialog and watched the photos of the sculptures go by, I realized that the DVD describes each piece using simple academic terms. I use these same terms in my elementary art room classes, which leads me to believe that the DVD could be shown to multiple age groups.
The flow from piece to piece is done smoothly and attention is paid to each piece’s details. The artwork is shown in three dimensions and the DVD also shows how, on some of the sculptures, a landscape was drawn or painted on using glazes or different clay techniques. It was very interesting to note that some of the raku earthenware had “Midwestern” names. In other works, the element of space could be defined by boundaries/limits.
Some ceramists used animals as subject matter, while one ceramist used fantasy in creating the images and included symbolism and humor. In one series of sculptures, the human figure is depicted as large, the surface full of color and texture. The portraits series tell funny stories. Metaphors and social criticism are expressed. While some ceramicists created very detailed works of clay-fantasizing, forgetting about rules and drawing on women’s attitudes-others used simplicity in creating more unrealistic, less detailed sculptures. Yet another ceramist used fragmentary segments that were made to look old. The fragments were huge (over 8 ft tall) and fired in segments.
This DVD includes whimsical, simple shapes along with complex detail and skillful imaginary artistry. This DVD is worth watching and would be a valuable piece to use in an educational setting.
Title: Clay Figures, Animals, and Landscapes
Length: 20 min.
For more information, visit www.crystalproductions.com.