The Crappy Magic Showroom / 507 Hagan St. July 6 - 20th

Bridget Bailey, The Commission to Rescue Surplus Ceramics

The Commission is pleased to return to the Showroom, this time in partnership with artist and educator Bridget Bailey. Join us in celebrating and preserving this collection of exuberant earthen artifacts left behind by middle school artists at the end of the school year, which otherwise would have been lost forever. In addition to beautifully glazed finished works, the Commission will offer a selection of unfinished bisque-fired pieces which may be purchased and painted right here in the showroom, all supplies provided.

Bridget Bailey: I felt at home teaching and making art among young artists–perhaps because I had long been an avid babysitter, and enjoy and value conversations and interactions with the very young. Of course children are incredibly uninhibited–with an openness and daring in their mark making and concepts, a fastness. Art class and kindergarten were both perpetual makers spaces, the students always working on something, relishing the plethora of materials, their synthesis and tactile qualities. Things often, however, do get left unfinished–the left-openness and potential energy of this is beautiful in itself, an ode to the energetic flight of the young mind and hand at work.

This, I found to be particularly true this past year, as I took on teaching some middle school ceramics classes. From molding to slipping and scoring, to bisque firing and then multiple coats of glazes, there are many steps. Whew. There is also often great self-critique in the eye of the middle school artist, as it is hard to realize the image in one’s mind in clay. There are also social pressures at work, as much as I the teacher can try to dispel compulsions towards perfection or impart the value of wabi sabi and individual style. Also, in our material, commercial, competitive society, these young people are already laden down with things. Books, sports equipment. Thus, they are discerning about which art objects they want to take out of the context of their making and into their personal space. It is after all, especially in clay class, about the act of making. Here in lies the origin of this show.

I invite and encourage you to see these objects with the context of their having been made in middle school art class. To imagine their new and perpetual lives! Onward, clay sculptures!