carolina girls are in the house tonight for our march gallery opening for mary rountree moore and virginia scotchie. no better way to get ready for warmer weather than to walk into the gallery surrounded by mary rountree moore’s abstract landscapes of the carolina coast. her paintings capture the ever changing view of the coastal wetlands along our beautiful coast. the cordgrass and black needlerush grasses slice through the water creating a layered complex interpretation of the pathways running through the marshes. the coast especially the salt marshes hold a special place in our hearts and mary’s love of the land is evident in each of her paintings.
south carolina artist virginia scotchie has been working with clay her whole life. she is able to transform the earth into objects of beauty. one thing that always surprises us is the weight of her work. carrying them around we are always amazed at their heft. virginia’s new work is focused on construction with circular and square tubes of clay manipulated into vessels and wall hangings. her glazes used in this exhibition transform the clay into gleaming metallic surfaces. the patina created replicates the surfaces of bronze or similar metals that can only be produced by oxidation over a long period. virginia is pushing the boundaries of her ceramic work to astonishing results.
mary rountree moore graduated from the university of north carolina, chapel hill and went on to study art at the national academy school of fine arts in nyc. her intense love of colors found in nature is the driving force behind her paintings with a keen interest in the natural order found in the landscape and the changing seasons. she pushes the boundaries of realism into abstraction as her compositions move from loose realism to abstraction. mary rountree moore is particularly drawn to the salt marshes of the southeast.
i strive to capture the feeling of those fleeting moments of the sublime- the vast beauty of nature, which humbles us all. the images are derived from nature’s innate abstractions, allowing the mind’s eye to gather it’s own interpretations. it is the memory of those undeniable visual experiences that gives me inspiration. balance in the natural order is strongly apparent in my serene landscapes.
-mary rountree moore
virginia scotchie is a ceramic artist and area head of ceramics at the university of south carolina. she holds a bfa in ceramics from unc-chapel hill and in 1985 completed her masters in fine arts at alfred university in new york. virginia exhibits her work extensively throughout the united states and abroad, and has received numerous awards including the sydney meyer fund international ceramics premiere award from the shepparton museum in victoria, australia. virginia has lectured internationally on her work and been artist in residence in taiwan, italy, australia and the netherlands. her clay forms reside in many public and private collections and reviews of her work appear in prestigious ceramic publications.
the idea of taking from one object and connecting it to another through the dissection of parts and pieces is a foundation of my recent work in ceramic sculpture. combined with this is my interest in the relation of whole forms to that of fragments.
exploration in the studio is and on-going visual investigation of man-made and natural objects. usually these consist of small things; ordinary in many ways, but possessing and odd quirkiness that pulls me to them. in some cases I do not know the objects particular purpose, function or where it may have originated. i feel this lack of knowledge allows me to see the object in a clearer light.
in some of the pieces i have abstracted from personal objects that have been given to me or passed on to me from a family member. usually they are things that have no monetary value. an old pipe of my fathers, a funnel from my mother’s kitchen an old bulb from the family christmas tree. a recent object that falls into category is a handmade wooden tool that was fashioned by my italian grandfather to plant his garden. slender and pointed with a stump of a side handle this small tool fit the hand of my grandfather and served him well. for me it not only holds visual intrigue but also a connection to my memory of him and the things he loved.
the worn, crusty surfaces on many of the pieces are created to give a sense of how time acts to make and unmake a form. this process can be seen in both natural and manmade objects.
i do not wish for this work to be named or labeled, rather, it is my intention that through the borrowing and reformation of objects the work might trigger one to look closer and find beauty and intrigue in the humble, ordinary and familiar objects that surround us.
a few weeks ago virginia scotchie was one of nine artists awarded the 2019 south arts state fellowship. selected from a pool of more than 800 applicants by a national jury based on the criterion of artistic excellence, scotchie’s ceramics will be shown in a group exhibition and now in consideration for the southern prize.
all available work by each artist can be viewed on the artist page of our site under the artist's individual tab. click on the artist image to see all work including sizing and pricing. the opening reception is friday, march 1st from 6-8 pm. please call the gallery if you have any further questions.