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The Artist is in The Details: The Ceramic Art of David Furman

The Artist is in The Details: The Ceramic Art of David Furman


In more than 35 years of creating new challenges for himself, ceramic artist David Furman has created a diverse body of work, beginning in the early 1970s with the environmental vignettes of his dog Molly. The later 1970s saw him create realist clay works of rolling pins, work boards, and throwing tools. He turned to constructing “contemporary ruins” in the 1980s and then trompe l'oeil tin cans/paintbrush works in the early 1990s. Bulletin, chalk, and drawing boards became the hallmark of his work in the mid-1990s, while erotic vegetable teapots were his focus in the late 1990s and early 2000s.

His most recent work moves ahead/back to the narrative, using ceramic simulacra of the wooden art mannequins used to teach proportion in drawing classes. From these seemingly anonymous and inanimate figures, Furman creates tableaus that enact the complexities of human interaction and emotion. Because the characters in the drama are anonymous, the works become at once personal and universal, for, as Furman says, “We all come to these works with our own set of excess baggage.”

Furman has had 45 one person exhibits, and his work has been included in such venues as the Whitney Museum, the Los Angeles County Museum of Art and the Smithsonian Institution. His artwork was awarded the Silver Medal in 2005 at the 3rd World Ceramic Biennial in Icheon, Korea. He has received three National Endowment for the Arts fellowships and three Fulbright fellowships. In August 2007 he was a U.S. State Department cultural envoy to Honduras where he juried the 9th Honduras Biennial of Sculpture and ceramics.

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Product Description

Driven by ideas, informed by thoughts, experiences and perceptions of the world around him, the works of David Furman reflect – with both irony and empathy – the time and place in which they were produced.

David Furman is Professor Emeritus at the Claremont Colleges in California, where he has taught since 1973, most recently occupying the Peter and Gloria Gold Endowed Chair from 2004 to 2007.

Furman remains an active artist: “I don’t think I’ll live long enough to do all the weird ideas that I have.

145 page full-color book, published by AMOCA, complete with essays by Kirsten Ellsworth, Elaine Levin, Mary MacNaughton, and a foreward by David Armstrong. This publication is funded in-part by the Pasadena Art Alliance.

Hard cover: $39.95
AMOCA members at the Cobalt level and above receive a 10% discount.

Additional Information

Weight 4 lbs


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