Reflect and Gather
By George Rodriguez
Open Studio: April 8 – 24 (Tuesday – Friday, 12 – 5pm)
(artwork under construction; studio open to the public)
Opening Reception: Thursday, April 25 @ 5pm
Exhibition Period: April 26 – May 18 (Tuesday – Friday, 10am – 5pm & Saturday, 12 – 5pm)
Artist Talk: Saturday, May 4 @ 1pm
MadArt Studio presents Reflect and Gather by Seattle-based ceramicist, George Rodriguez. Rodriguez’s practice is rooted in cultural inquiry, in which mythology, color composition, architecture, and distinct ornamentation combine in sculptural form to reflect the varied influences of his own heritage and time abroad. In this exhibition, he expands his object-based practice to include intimate, immersive, installations that embody his distinctive style in new shapes.
Reflect and Gather is a series of compact rooms, each comprised of over 1,000 handmade decorative relief tiles and individualized through a variance in color, texture, and method of lighting. While stimulating the viewer’s visual faculty in an overabundance of ornamentation, Rodriguez creates meditative environments of disarming stillness. With the intention of fostering connection and community, prior to beginning work at MadArt, Rodriguez opened his Ballard-based studio and invited groups to join in the exhibition’s making process by hand-pressing and painting hundreds of tiles. Rodriguez maintains this participatory component of the exhibition by incorporating a malleable, wet-clay room that records visitors’ movements within the space over time. Referencing the urban architectural plaza, the rooms are adjoined by a community gathering space created through an assemblage of decorative statues, columns, and benches. Here visitors can congregate, reflect, and continue to contribute to the installation.
Special thanks to Clay Art Center in Tacoma, Washington for their material contributions to see this project through and to MudShark Studios in Portland, Oregon for their expertise in the production of the RAM pressed tiles included in Reflect and Gather.