Friday, February 10, 2017

Oblique strategies: UIS Gallery exhibit pushes boundaries of ceramics

The current exhibit at the consistently innovative University of Illinois Springfield Visual Arts Gallery is not your grandmother’s ceramics display.

A series of evocative, colorful and otherworldly shapes, the elegant “Oblique Frontiers” offers hints of an alternate reality of tactile beauty and mysterious utility.

Artist Tyler Lotz is a professor of ceramics at the Illinois State University College of Fine Arts in Normal. His work has been displayed throughout the United States as well as in prominent exhibits in France, Poland and Korea.

Described by Lotz in an artist’s statement as being “influenced by both natural and mediated landscapes, a longing for the wilderness, and failed attempts to conjure personal experiences in the landscape,” the work in “Oblique Frontiers” is mesmerizing and indelible.

“I had never seen his work in person,” said UIS Visual Arts Gallery manager Allison Lacher. “When it arrived here I was very impressed. While we were hanging the show, I fell in love with it. I keep calling it a gorgeous show and a stunning show.”

Interestingly, one of the pieces featured in the show, ‘switchback,’ was identified by Lotz during his artist talk at Brookens Auditorium on Jan. 26 as being the one the artist was most unsure about. “That piece is easily my favorite,” Lacher said.

“Oblique Frontiers” will remain on display through Feb. 16.

This article appeared in the Illinois Times on February 10, 2017.

Read the entire article online.