Eric Serritella’s ‘Trompe l’Oeil Ceramics’ Art Exhibition Sends Meaningful Message | Culture

From April 14 to December 3, the Gregg Museum of Art & Design will present “Trompe l’Oeil Ceramics”, an exhibition featuring ceramic sculptures by artist Eric Serritella.

Serritella is part of the Orange County Artists Guild Studio Tour in Chapel Hill, but her main gallery is in New York. He exhibits and sells his unique pieces all over the world.

“The type of art I do is considered figurative art,” Serritella said. “I describe it as trompe l’oeil, trompe l’oeil, or sham, taking a medium – clay – and making it look like something else, which is clay. drink. Some call it hyperrealism because in some ways it’s more detailed than nature.

Roger Manley, director and curator of the Gregg Museum, said he hopes people come to the exhibition for a new experience.

“It’s an opportunity to be amazed,” Manley said. “The ceramic imitates trees and wood with such precision that we’ll have to be careful that people don’t reach out and try to make sure it’s not wood. … Everything seems to have grown naturally, but everything is the result of very careful construction.

Serritella said the inspiration for her work came from studying Yixing teapots during her artist residencies in Taiwan.

“It’s these little teapots, and in the 1600s they carved them to look like pumpkins, gourds, and tree trunks to incorporate nature into the tea ceremony,” Serritella said. “So it’s like a 400 years later interpretation of the tiny teapot. I was very inspired by those because I just fell in love with them when I was there.

Serritella grew up in central New York and is inspired by different places in nature and types of trees.

“I grew up in the woods,” Serritella said. “I have spent my whole life in and around nature. I don’t do botanical studies, I try to channel the voice, spirit and energy of trees, so I take a lot of artistic license with the design.

Serritella uses all different types of clay techniques, including wheel throwing and slab building.

“I view my works as the story of my subconscious told through my hands,” Serritella said. “I rarely sit down and think ‘Oh, I’m going to stream there.’ It’s more about expressing the voices or songs of what I’ve seen in nature all my life and letting them out Sometimes a cloudy pattern appears when I didn’t intend to create a cloudy pattern.

The process involves designing the piece, then sculpting the details as the clay dries. After the piece has been fired once in a kiln, Serritella adds color in layers, using stains and ceramic oxides. Then the piece is fired a second time to set the color.

“My favorite part is the design,” Serritella said. “For me, the details create impact, but it’s the design, the story and the emotion in the piece; that’s what makes it art. I don’t have models in my studio, I just come from my heart. … I want to put my energy, my emotion and my story into it, and then have it be something that someone can interpret in their own way.

Serritella said he had two different stages when creating the pieces.

“Building the design is almost like a dance,” Serritella said. “I move with the piece and I’m a 70s kid, so I listen to Led Zeppelin and rock and roll…and then as I carve out the details, it gets very meditative.”

One of the reasons he is an artist is for the spiritual and natural connections.

“I connect with nature, people connect with the artwork and through it connect with nature,” Serritella said. “Actually, the name of the exhibit is ‘Shared Spaces’ and it’s about sharing space on this planet.”

Through these connections to the artwork, Serritella wants people to see decaying beauty.

“I want people to see that despite what we humans do to nature, despite the kind of disregard we have for nature, it’s still beautiful,” Serritella said. “Even the rotting log, it still has that splendor, and I hope people start to walk with softer steps. That’s the point, to share spaces and walk with a softer step.

An exhibition opening reception will be held on May 5 and an artist talk with Serritella will be held on April 21 at 6 p.m. Both events are free and open to the public. For more information about Serritella and the exhibit, visit her website or the Gregg Museum website.

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