Shae Bishop

Artist Statement

Ceramics and textiles are two of our most familiar materials. From floor tiles to dinner plates, from shirts to bed sheets, our perceptions of these materials are inextricably linked to their functions. Their physical characteristics seem to complement yet oppose one another: one hard and fragile, the other soft and flexible.

I make sculptural garments by sewing together hundreds of ceramic tiles with fibers. By merging the materials I disrupt assumptions about function and draw attention to the role of dress in visual communication and personal identity. The patterns I create in these pieces, like clothing, are part of a deep-rooted visual language that transcends history and material. Carefully fitted to my own body, the garments are an architecture of self; they enclose and protect while also speaking about what lies within.

By drawing connections between diverse craft traditions, cultures, and my personal history, I create wearable portraits. Piece by piece, tile becomes textile, building stories around the body.

-- Shae Bishop


Artist Shae Bishop examines the relationships between ceramics and textiles by making wearable garment-sculptures. Originally from Kentucky, he earned his BFA in Ceramics and Art History from the Kansas City Art Institute. He has been awarded residencies at The Archie Bray Foundation in Montana, Red Star Studios in Kansas City, San Diego State University, and elsewhere in the US, as well as in Hungary, Turkey, and Indonesia. He has exhibited his work nationally and internationally. He is currently based in North Carolina in the Penland area artist community.