Rebecca Harvey

Artist Statement

My current series of work is an exploration of the border between an object and the space it contains. I dissolve objects, reconstitute them, cover them in layers and rearrange. I have been altering raw bricks, sometimes by suspending them in water. I watch the particles detach, revealing a new sort of structure within. Other times I will hammer an unfired brick, looking at the difference in the shear pattern from its fired cousin. I snap bricks, covering them with a surface that creates tension and heating them until they split. I’ll make a shell, fire it, break it off, refill it and start again.

I take the objects that I have altered and cover them in skins: encasing them in clay or slathering them in slip, pasting them in paper or coloring them with pigments. Sometimes they have multiple skins ,they are fired and refired in the kiln. Sometimes the alteration lies lightly on the surface, at other times I cannot remember what the container now contains.

My work has long been both project and place-based, centered in the orchestration of objects. I measure and balance, parts are formed, colored, and placed; lines are created between and through shapes. My practice lays a line of abstraction and chance, reconstructing and reworking. I play with reflection and absorption, using one to measure the other, lining and misaligning shape and surface. Sometimes the arrangement pulls together and just holds, flickering but impermanent, just beyond the grasp of understanding, an almost thing. . I poke and prod material and form, coaxing it into a new existence. I think of lines across a landscape, watch the shadows caused by clouds.

-- Rebecca Harvey


Born in Columbus, Ohio Rebecca Harvey received her MFA from Cranbrook Academy of Art in Bloomfield Hills, MI and her BFA from the University of the Arts in Philadelphia, PA.Numerous awards include several Ohio Arts Council Awards, Columbus Arts Council Award and International residencies in countries from Sweden to China, Canada to Italy and Iceland to Germany. She often writes and lectures about the intertwined histories of the decorative arts, and articles featuring her work have appeared in Studio Potter and American Craft. A long time faculty member at the Ohio State University she was also did a brief stint Head of Programme, Applied Arts (Ceramics, Glass, Metal, Jewellery) at the Royal College of Art in London.