Mixed Media and Emerging Artists: An Eclectic Mix of Whimsy and Functionality

(Above: Knives by Harold Kalmus)

The Philadelphia Museum of Art Craft Show features a wide variety and assortment of contemporary crafts, and in that mix, you’ll see whimsy, style, and items that are utilitarian in their functionality. In this week’s blog, we give you all three.

(BONUS: Scroll down for info about the PMA Craft Show Preview Party, plus info about a chance to win two tickets and a $200 gift certificate to the 2019 Philadelphia Museum of Art Craft Show!) 


IAN PETRIE

Ian Petrie uses hand-built pottery as a functional canvas for his whimsical comics-inspired narrative illustrations. He begins with hand-drawings which he screenprints and transfers onto the ceramics. Ian enjoys the duality of his process, saying, “Some days it feels great to get in the clay studio and get my hands dirty; I love the intensely tactile and immediate response of slabbing, pinching, and coiling pots. Sketching and inking come less naturally to me, so the drawing side becomes a nice challenge compared to the ceramics.” Ian’s work is intended for habitual use, and over time, the imagined stories may fade and eventually reveal hidden imagery beneath. Ian really enjoys seeing people react to his work. “I intentionally create my narratives to be open-ended so the viewer can fill it in for themselves”, he says. “One of my favorite things is hearing people ‘finish’ the stories I begin.”

As an emerging artist, Ian is honored and admittedly surprised at being selected. He has been working at his craft for six years, but the process that has come to define his look only started three years ago. His inspiration is drawn (no pun intended) from the old-school black and white comics world more than other ceramicists. Ian has exhibited his work across the country, including at the American Museum for Ceramic Art. He moved to Philly a year ago, is enjoying exploring his newly adopted city and is looking forward to being a first time exhibitor at the PMA Craft Show.


 

HAROLD KALMUS

“My goal is to make beautiful knives for the kitchen. Knives that work as they should, are a pleasure to use and a delight to look at.” ~ Harold Kalmus

Harold Kalmus may be an emerging artist at the PMA Craft Show, but he’s far from being new at creating art, or for that matter at attending the show, which he has done for over 20 years. An accomplished sculptor, Harold knows his way around tools. Prior to creating beautiful kitchen knives, Harold’s day job was in the field of digital modeling, rendering and animation, primarily for the architecture and design fields. When the economy took a turn, so did Harold, and eventually, in contemplating a career change, he found himself taking over the cooking responsibilities at home. This led to realizing that kitchen knives in general were sub-par to what he wanted, and the rest as they say, is history. Kalmus Knives are both beautiful to look at and hold, as well as exquisite in their utilitarian purpose. Harold has only been making knives for the last three years, and when asked what his biggest accomplishment is with his work, he said, “Honestly, getting accepted into the PMA Craft Show”.

 


 

LISA & SCOTT CYLINDER

Lisa and Scott Cylinder are returning to the PMA Craft Show for the ninth time, first exhibiting in 2003. They love interacting with the people who attend and say it is the best way to meet their audience. This husband and wife team first met at Tyler School of Art in 1984. They began working in tandem in 1988, with 2019 marking over 30 years of collaboration. “The best part of what we do is working together on a daily basis and bouncing our ideas off one another”, says Scott. “Every day is a different experience and we each bring a different energy to what we make.”

Lisa and Scott’s pieces typically begin with a found object that is manipulated and incorporated into their fabrications. There is whimsy in their imagery, with themes based on fables, wordplay, and their own observations. Influenced by their interest in modern art, nature, film, scientific phenomena and current concerns, their work is often kinetic, adding to its charm and character. The Cylinders have been featured in prominent national publications including American Craft magazine and Smithsonian Online and they consider their biggest achievement to be surviving by making art for 31+ years and raising a family solely from their creations.

 

 



The Preview Party

Tickets are available for the Philadelphia Museum of Art Craft Show Preview Party on Thursday, November 7th. This is a great opportunity to meet and mingle with this year’s artists while enjoying a cocktail buffet gala and previewing the show.

Click HERE for more information and to buy tickets.

 


 

Philadelphia Museum of Art Craft Show TICKET GIVEAWAY

Enter by October 30th for a chance to win two tickets and a $200 gift certificate to the 2019 Philadelphia Museum of Art Craft Show! 

Click HERE to enter.

No purchase necessary to participate in ticket giveaway.

 

 

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