Roberta Massuch

Roberta Massuch

    Gallery

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    Ceramics

    Artist's Biography

    Influenced heavily by the architecture of her surroundings, Roberta Massuch (Philadelphia, PA) creates functional pottery, sculptural vessels and installations with evident reflection on construction techniques and the presence of hand. Utilizing the dichotomy of varied surface colors and their interactions, she establishes a comparison to individuals and human interaction; her incorporation of the step motif serves as a metaphor for change. Leaving seams exposed as evidence of construction, her work allow the viewer opportunity to ascertain the interaction of individual components and reference to their structural influence. Massuch received her BFA in ceramics from Northern Illinois University (DeKalb) in 2005 and her MFA from Louisiana State University (Baton Rouge) in 2013. In addition to posts as instructor at The Clay Studio (Philadelphia, PA), Tyler School of Art (Philadelphia, PA), and the Community College of Philadelphia (PA), she has received awards including the Jerome Ceramic Artist Project Grant in 2009, the Independence Foundation Visual Arts Fellowship in 2015 and further recognition through publications such as Clay Times, Ceramics Monthly, Musing About Mud, and various exhibition catalogs through The Clay Studio. Massuch’s work has been exhibited at universities, institutions, galleries and museums across the western United States including Northern Clay Center (Minneapolis, MN), Appalachian Center for Craft (Smithville, TN), Worcester Center for Craft (MA), The Clay Studio, Philadelphia Museum of Art (PA), Goggleworks Center for the Arts (Reading, PA), and the Visual Arts Center of Richmond (VA).

    Artist's Statement

    Positive and negative, inside and out, spaces between, or above and around — these elements repeat in all of my creative inquiries. Color, light, and shadows highlight formal relationships between objects. Inextricably involved, the surface of one always affects the perception of another due to shifts in the intensity and direction of light covering the forms. I utilize this phenomenon to draw a comparison to human interactions and the stair/step motif is a metaphor for change. Moving into, away from, or towards something or someone - the spaces between shift and change with time.

    Making objects by hand is what drives my practice — to meditate on the actions of making and to form relationships in the work I create and with people who use/view them. My making is repetitive and deliberate. I find value in these actions, pinching and pressing the clay to create subtle shifts in the surface and between the minimalist forms; instilling a curiosity in an effort to connect to the history of craft. William Morris said “Have nothing in your home that you do not know to be useful and believe to be beautiful.” I strive to create functional and sculptural work that aligns with this philosophy and that truth in materials is maintained in my work. This tenet of modern architecture is essential and visible in both my functional and sculptural work. Seams are left exposed, béton brut left as evidence of how the vessels and sculptures are constructed. I want the mark of my hands to be visible as a way to connect to the viewer/user.

    Selected Exhibitions

    Solo
    2017
    through the between, The Clay Studio, Philadelphia, PA
    Resident Artist solo exhibition

    2013
    still Noticing, Glassell Gallery, Baton Rouge, LA
    MFA Thesis Exhibition

    Two-Person
    2017
    Roberta Massuch & Patrick Coughlin: New Works, Kitchen Table Gallery, Philadelphia, PA

    2015
    Big Intimacies, The Center for Emerging Visual Artists, Philadelphia, PA
    With Seneca Weintraut
    Curator: Diana Nawi

    2014
    Tyler Ceramics Resident Artist Exhibition, Tyler School of Art Atrium, Philadelphia, PA
    With Michael Ashley

    Group
    2020
    InterChange, The Quick Hotel, Richmond, VA
    Curators: Maia Leppo, Natalie Sweet

    Future Memories Current and Former Residents of The Clay Studio, The Clay Studio, Philadelphia, PA

    2019
    From Storage to Studio: Reflexive Relevance, The Clay Studio, Philadelphia, PA
    In collaboration with the Philadelphia Museum of Art

    The Cup Show, 3rd National Invitational Exhibition of Cups, Hudgens Center for art & Learning, Duluth, GA
    Juror: Roberto Lugo

    Five Foot Show, Gallery 360, Minneapolis, MN

    Everyday Ordinary: Art of the People, NCECA 2019 conference exhibition, The Clay Studio, Philadelphia, PA

    2018
    2018 Permanent Residency, GoggleWorks Center for the Arts, Reading, PA

    The Philadelphia Potters & Guests, The Clay Studio, Philadelphia, PA

    #UnThink Pink, The Clay Studio, Philadelphia, PA

    Casting Shadows, The Clay Studio, Philadelphia, PA

    Seeking, Mingenback Gallery, Bethany College, Lindsborg, KS

    2017
    Hello/Goodbye, The Clay Studio, Philadelphia, PA

    5 Artists/5 Visions, 3D faculty exhibition, Community College of Philadelphia, Philadelphia, PA

    Hand Crafted Afternoon Tea, The Clay Studio, Philadelphia, PA

    Small Favors: Thinking Inside the Box, NCECA 2017 conference exhibition, The Clay Studio, Philadelphia, PA

    2016
    Sometimes, Always, Never, Carroll House Gallery, Keene, NH

    Community: Potters of the Philadelphia Clay Studio, MT Burton Gallery, Surf City, NJ

    Shaping Minds: Philadelphia's Clay Mentors, Pearlstein Gallery, Drexel University, Philadelphia, PA

    Materiality, Methodology, Metamorphosis, NCECA concurrent exhibition, The Studios Inc., Kansas City, MO

    Accessibility by Design, NCECA concurrent exhibition, Vulpes Bastiles, Kansas City, MO
    Curators: Susan Biener, Brian Gillis

    The Architectural Object, HJM Architects, Inc., Kansas City, MO

    100 Artists, 1000 Cups, NCECA 2017 conference exhibition, The Clay Studio, Philadelphia, PA

    Selected Exhibitions Pre-2015
    On the Threshold, Reed + Smith Gallery, The Clay Studio, Philadelphia, PA

    Looking Back, Worcester Center for Craft, Worcester, MA

    Te(A)ch, Sculpture Gym, Philadelphia, PA

    Prospect.3 + Baton Rouge: Notes Upriver, The Walls Art & Design Center, Baton Rouge, LA

    With Love, Elevator Projects, The Walls Art & Design Center, Baton Rouge, LA

    In The Mix, Crimson Laurel Gallery, Bakersville, NC & Amaco/Brent Gallery, Indianapolis, IN

    Natural Disasters, Crimson Laurel Gallery, Bakersville, NC
    Curator: Martina Lantin

    Interpreting the Cup: Process, Influence, and Intent, Crimson Laurel Gallery, Bakersville, NC
    Curator: Jason Bige Burnett

    Present Tense: Push and Pull, Midwest Clay Project, Madison, WI

    Seen/Unseen, members of Clay in ComMN group exhibit, Appalachian Center for Craft, at Tennessee Tech University, Smithville, TN

    Three Jerome Artists, Gallery M, Northern Clay Center, Minneapolis, MN

    Fogelberg and Redwing Artists Exhibition, Gallery A, Northern Clay Center, Minneapolis, MN

    15th Strictly Functional Pottery National, Market House Craft Center, Lancaster, PA
    Juror: Malcolm Davis

    Artists in Residence Exhibit, Krikorian Gallery, Worcester, MA

    Other
    2019
    The Philadelphia Potters' 3rd Annual Urban Studio Tour, Philadelphia, PA

    The 43rd Philadelphia Museum of Art Contemporary Craft Show, Philadelphia, PA

    Visual Arts Center of Richmond Craft + Design Show, Richmond, VA

    2018
    The Philadelphia Potters' 2nd Annual Urban Studio Tour, Philadelphia, PA

    2017
    HipPOP emerging artist program at American Craft Council Show, Atlanta, GA

    The 41st Philadelphia Museum of Art Contemporary Craft Show – Emerging Artist, Philadelphia, PA

    Publications

    2019
    “From Storage to Studio: Reflexive Relevance” exhibition catalogue, Schiffer Publishing

    Everyday Ordinary: Art of the People, catalogue of essays published by the The Clay Studio in conjunction with the exhibition Everyday Ordinary: Art of the People at the 2019 NCECA conference ‘ClayTopia’

    2016
    The Clay Studio: 100 Artists 1000 Cups, Published on the occasion of The Clay Studio: 100 Artists 1000 Cups at the 2016 NCECA 50th Annual Conference, “Makers, Mentors and Milestones”

    2013
    Monday Morning Eye Candy, Musing about Mud blog, May 27, 2013

    2009
    Ceramics Monthly, September, Upfront, pg. 17

    2007
    Clay Times, May/June Vol. 13 No. 3, pg. 20

    Professional Experience

    2017 - Present
    Community College of Philadelphia, Philadelphia, PA
    Faculty Instructor

    2014 - Present
    Community College of Philadelphia, Philadelphia, PA
    Faculty Instructional Aide

    2013 - 2015
    Tyler School of Art & Architecture, Philadelphia, PA
    Adjunct Faculty

    2014 - 2019
    The Clay Studio, Philadelphia, PA
    Resident Artist Instructor

    2010 - 2013
    Louisiana State University, Baton Rouge, LA
    Graduate Teaching ASsistantship

    Awards & Honors

    2016
    Ceramics Monthly Emerging Artist

    2015
    Independence Foundation Visual Arts Fellowship, Philadelphia, PA

    2013
    Director's Purchase Award, LSU School of Art, Baton Rouge, LA

    2009
    2009 Jerome Ceramic Artist Project Grant
    Awarded by Northern Clay Center

    2007
    Ceramics Monthly Permanent Collection Purchase Award, 15th Annual Strictly Functional Pottery National

    Fellowships & Residencies

    2021
    Wharton Esherick Museum Residency & Exhibition, Wharton Esherick Museum, Paoli, PA
    Made possible with funding from the Windgate Foundation

    2020
    McKnight Residency, Northern Clay Center, Minneapolis, MN

    2014 - 2019
    Artist in Residence, The Clay Studio, Philadelphia, PA

    2016
    Arquetopia Special Ceramics Artist Residency, Arquetopia Foundation, Puebla, Mexico

    2013 - 2014
    Visiting Artist in Residence, Ceramics Area, Tyler School of Art and Architecture, Philadelphia, PA

    2008 - 2009
    Fogelberg Fellowship Residency, Northern Clay Center, Minneapolis, MN

    2006 - 2007
    Artist in Residence, Worcester Center for Craft, Worcester, MA

    Affiliations/Memberships

    2021 - Present
    InLiquid, Philadelphia, PA
    Member

    2017 - Present
    The Philadelphia Potters, Philadelphia, PA
    Member

    2015 - 2017
    The Clay Studio, Philadelphia, PA
    The Clay Studio Board of Directors Resident Board Representative

    2008 - Present
    National Council on the Education of the Ceramic Arts (NCECA)
    Member

    2013 - Present
    artaxis.com
    Member

    2012 - 2014
    Elevator Projects Artist Collective, Baton Rouge, LA

    2010 - 2013
    Ceramic Art Student Association, Louisiana State University, Baton Rouge, LA
    President 2010-12, PR Coordinator

    2009 - 2010
    Clay in ComMN, A Minnesota Women Artist Collective

    2003 - 2005
    Ceramic Art Organization, NIU
    President 2004, 2005

    Education

    2013
    Louisiana State University, Baton Rouge, LA
    MFA, Studio Art in Ceramics

    2005
    Northern Illinois University, DeKalb, IL
    BFA, 3-D Studio in Ceramics
    Magna cum Laude