I examine notions about the formation of the female self. How much of a woman’s identity is self-constructed and how much is socially created? With a focus on empathy as a means of communication, I make objects using textiles, clay, slip, and fusing glass to investigate concepts of domesticity, motherhood, sexuality, and aging.
To me, the tactile qualities of fabric, clay, and slip often resemble the varied textures of human relationships. While clay is my predominant medium, I often use fabric soaked in porcelain slip, fusing glass, and found objects to complete my work. I consider how the American female identity is transformed as we grow and change, and the context of my work is based on a blend of my observations of others and my personal experiences.
A sculpture starts as a traditional coil pot and morphs into an abstract form as I build. The soft, wet clay gradually stiffens and dries, and during a firing it changes from natural to ceramic. Comparing the human experience to the ceramic process, the original form remains, yet the material has been altered and strengthened. It’s about the “process of becoming”.
Jeannie Field Ichimura