Starting June 5, 2017, in collaboration with The Japan Foundation, the Currey Gallery at Watkins will present Yakishime-Earth Metamorphosis, a traveling exhibition that focuses on the Japanese ceramic technique known as “yakishime.” Firing unglazed wares at high temperatures, yakishime has developed in distinctive directions in Japan, with some of the earliest known wares dating to the fourth and fifth centuries. The exhibition showcases such pieces, as well as other applications of the process, including utensils used in the sacred Japanese tea ceremony, tablewares, as well as non-utilitarian objects. Yakishime is one the most ancient and unique ceramic processes, but also an ongoing and contemporary one. Its high temperatures bind clays together and vitrify them, making them waterproof. Contemporary artists have adopted yakishime, weaving together tradition and innovation in compelling ways. A sensibility and aesthetic unique to Japan, the exhibit offers powerful insights into art, craft, and the profound and constant interplay between history and our current time. Guests are encouraged to visit the Currey Gallery to view the exhibit during Watkins’s business hours. The show ends June 30th.
In this new exhibit, Herrera and Jeck present videos that explore various themes. Herrera’s work examines identity as a Mexican American by limning the differences within each culture. In a satirical approach, her “Authentic Tamales” acknowledges consumerist America by altering her grandmother’s tamale recipe with American ingredients. “Puerta Abierta,” made in collaboration with Ernesto Stewart, is a charcoal animation that represents escaping inner turmoil.
Henry Jeck’s work addresses the saturation of sports imagery that exists in American culture. Using video installation, he combines sports and religion to comment on the mythicized role athletes attain among fanatics.
Micaela Herrera is native to Nashville with family from Celaya, Guanajuato. She currently studies Fine Art at Watkins with a fascination in wearable-sculpture and painting.
Henry Jeck was born in Chicago, IL, and raised in Nashville. He studied music from a young age as a trumpet player. Having been raised in a family of artists, he shifted his focus to visual art. Jeck is also a student at Watkins with a special interest in sculpture and video.