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May 17, 2012 to August 5, 2012

Periphery: Multimedia Works by Michael Fujita

Through his sculptural work, Michael Fujita explores memories of actual architectural sites and details scattered throughout the city of Philadelphia. As the artist states, “the memory of a staircase exposed now by the void where another once stood, the custom bricks of varying size used for building and paving, and the patterns made through their various combinations, all serve as launching points.” His floor and pedestal pieces demonstrate his "kiln casting" technique, a process by which he layers hundreds of varied parts and glaze materials within the confines of a mold that is capable of being fired. After the firing, the mold is broken away, revealing singular elements fused together to create a unique whole. Fujita also creates forms from wood, using the same process of layering smaller singular forms to create larger pieces. Periphery exhibited Fujita's new ceramic work as well as a life-sized tree made of wood that was constructed within the gallery. Fujita's work captures the mood and sensibility of his surroundings, often combining the beauty of nature with the built environment along with conceptual aspects such as the time, labor, and craft involved in creating the work.

Fujita received his MFA from the New York State College of Ceramics at Alfred University and a BFA from the Kansas City Art Institute. Before being awarded the Evelyn Shapiro Foundation Fellowship from the Clay Studio in Philadelphia (2009), he spent time working and teaching in Portland, Oregon. As an emerging artist, he has been included in group exhibitions in galleries and museums throughout the country, including Greenwich House Pottery, New York, NY (2011); Project Space, Phoenix Convention Center, NCECA, Phoenix, AZ (2009); Archer Gallery, Clark College, WA (2008); Richard Carter Studio, Forestville, CA (2008); the Clay Studio, Philadelphia, PA (2005 and 2006); Alfred University, Alfred, NY (2006); Dolphin Gallery, Kansas City, MO (2006); and Centerspace Gallery, NCECA, Portland, OR (2005). Prior to moving to Philadelphia, he was an instructor of Advanced Ceramics at the Oregon College of Arts and Crafts in Portland. In addition to his residency at the Clay Studio, he was a resident at Red Star Studios in Kansas City, MO, and at Pope Valley Pottery in Pope Valley, CA.

Tags: ceramics, fiber, mixed media