In my work, I make connections between the utilitarian object and its counterparts; the user and/or the object’s environment.
Being the daughter of a woodworker, I was raised in a design-rich environment that has influenced who I am and my current body of ceramic work. Geometry, texture, and the functionality of my work emanates from this artistic environment. Different textural surfaces are created in my work by using pinched marks juxtaposed between smooth, defined lines and edges. Bright colors paired against a soft earthy color palette create high-contrast focal points in the work.
Using simple geometry, I sgraffito (1) line-work into the pots to heighten the formal elements of design. The simple line-work in the form and the surface of the pots showcases food in its presentation. My work strives to bring forth a sense of tranquility in its minimalistic design, yet there is a sense of playfulness directed through the color palate and pinched surface.
1: a decorating technique by which scratching through the surface layer of clay reveals the lower layers which are typically contrasting in color— Didem Mert
Didem Mert was born and raised in Cincinnati, OH. She received her BFA in Ceramics from Northern Kentucky University in 2014. Mert has exhibited nationally in places such as Baltimore Clayworks, Charlie Cummings Gallery, The Clay Studio of Philadelphia, Terra Incognito, AKAR. The Morean Center for Clay, LUX Center for the Arts, Summerfair’s Emerging Artists Juried Exhibition, The Erie Art Museum, and at over forty other venues. She is represented in galleries such as Lillstreet Art Center’s Gallery, Charlie Cummings Gallery, Companion Gallery, Taos Clay, etc. Her work was published in Ceramics Monthly’s 2014 Undergraduate Showcase. She was awarded a first prize grant through the Three Arts Foundation in 2014. Didem worked at Queen City Clay, one of the largest public ceramic studios in the country, in Cincinnati, OH for six years. She received a scholarship to attend a residency at Watershed Center for the Ceramic Arts and a scholarship to attend a workshop with Jerilyn Virden at Penland School of Crafts during the summer of 2015. She was featured on the cover of Pottery Making Illustrated’s January/February 2016 issue. Mert was included on C File’s list of 15 Potters to Watch in 2016. She was also featured on Architectural Digest’s 10 Ceramic Artists Giving Pottery A Modern Update. Didem is currently attending Edinboro University’s MFA (ceramics) program and is expected to graduate in May of 2017.