As you probably know by now we love discovering and sharing artists and designers who leave us wanting to know more about their work. Whether you are an avid art collector or an admirer of art we believe that Ruth's work is unique, smart and engaging so much so that you will remember it long after you see it. When viewing it up close you first notice the surface texture and beautiful form; if you pick up some of the smaller pieces you notice the weight of it in your hands. Upon closer inspection you see links woven together to create a chain mail that is rigid as well as movable. Ruth writes:
"Worn under Medieval armor, chain mail is made of tiny interlocking metal rings
designed to protect a body in motion. I use the chain mail pattern and other woven patterns to create ceramic works that conjure up a sense of permanence and defensive concealment. Like the ancient armor, my pieces are made of a fabric of moveable interlocking rings. Using clay to make a protective mesh is contradictory;
for how can it defend anything, much less itself? Visually stone-like, the pieces
appear strong and impenetrable, belying their inherent fragility."
There is also a sophisticated sense of humor in many of her pieces. In the chain mail sculpture [above] Set Back Skyscraper, 2008, the block leans forward, bends back and twists to the side. This piece is named after set back laws in Manhattan in which buildings are required to be 2-3 stories tall in the front while the taller floors of the building are set away from the sidewalk, behind the entrances, to allow sunlight to fall into the street. We love how the piece begs to be manipulated and moved and almost takes on a soft and flexible quality while remaining rigid.
"When I am showing my work in a gallery setting people often assume
that the work should not be touched. I want people to engage with it—that
interaction is part of the experiential aspect of the work"
Ruth teaches at Fairleigh Dickinson University and The Art School at Old Church, both in NJ.
She has an undergraduate degree at Rutgers University in math.
Artist in residence programs:
Hunter College, NYC
Anderson Ranch, CO
Greenwich House Pottery, NYC
Watershed Center for Ceramic Arts, ME
Chester Spring Studio, PA
University of the Arts, PA.