Derek Reeverts

Artist Statement

The idea of identity carries much of my attention. What makes us who we are and why do we do the things we do? In my recent body of work I have tried to pay a great deal of attention to addressing the questions that I ask myself in order to help define the world around me as well as the events that take place. The intent of addressing these questions is not necessarily to come to an answer.

My inspiration comes from the flaws and foibles of human nature, to me they are the most interesting and defining part of what make us human. By examining these flaws I try to create a dialogue of the universal so that the work has the ring of truth that everyone can access on some level. I attempt to create expression and predicament that has a subtle sense of gravity while, at the same time, adding levity with an element of satire.

My work draws upon the rich history of the ceramic figurine because it has often been used in a ritual and mythic sense and also as a means of cultural and personal identification. I see these figures, much like the adages and archetypes that they are titled with, as a reservoir of cultural investment that changes with us as we change. I display the figures on shelves hoping to give the viewer a sense of the domestic whether consciously or subconsciously. I like to skirt and play with the gray area between kitsch and fine art and that of the hand-made figures before the industrial revolution and the production figures that came after.

The fact that each figure has a certain production aesthetic while all being hand fabricated is very important to me. I work on a small scale because I believe it allows a more intimate connection with the piece while still allowing the viewer a broad exploration into the individual reality of each work. Along with my strong interest in pop culture and illustration, I attempt to create figures that carry in them a hybridization of the old and the new while still carrying a flavor of middle America from which they are born. The figures that I create are parts of my self identity and my experiences. I try to use them as a lens through which I focus my self-exploration, questions and observations about life. They embody my wonderment and discovery of the world, but also my apprehension and fears.

-- Derek Reeverts