Arlene Schechet

Arlene Shechet

Arlene Shechet is an intriguing artist who works primarily in ceramics with emphasis on the concept of multiples. Her work is highly charged as it deals with the usage of space and the importance of form. She originally began as a purely ceramics however as her work has progressed she has began to work more with a variety of materials including both glass and metal. Her work is beautiful as Buddhism heavily influences her early work. Examples of her early work include “Mind Field Series: Turning wheel.” This is a highly charging work in which her heavy influence from Buddhism bleeds through as the wheel is highly similar to that of a Buddhist Mandela. The Mandela is a traditional symbol of meditation meant to replicate that of a stoopa. This work was constructed during the phase in which she made her own paper. The innocence and innate beauty of the simple circle and its importance is furthered as she slowly moved from traditional papermaking into the world of papier-mâché. With papier-mâché she generated a variety of forms, which mimic the position of a meditating Buddha. The simplicity and innate beauty of the forms generated generates a highly effective piece in which the onlooker looks upon a forest of forms constructed to mimic the prophet, covered with the Mandelas and images of stoopas. The work is beautiful as it generates a sensation of tranquility and calm within the work meant to elicit a sensation of clarity and calm in the onlooker.

From this solid basis and understanding of form Shechet’s work slowly evolved past papier-mâché and into glasswork. She worked to generate several strong forms, which captured the freedom and essence of the common man’s spirit. Her glasswork was criticized by herself as being too innately beautiful to deal with the concepts that she hoped to achieve through her work. This was remedied with a transition of material back into ceramics. She now currently generates highly obscure and abstract forms, which are highly charged and beautiful in their conception and execution. The unique touch that she adds to her work is that the pedestals are made from the bricks that kilns are made from. Each painted a unique and festive color the pedestals add to the overall feel of the work and help to convey a sensation of life within her work.

Overall Shechet’s work is innately interesting as it deals with the simplicity of the form and the interaction between the onlooker and the concept of space. Her lecture was truly insightful as it allowed for a better understanding of her as an artist as well as the importance of her work in terms of technique and execution. Truly she is an excellent artist and her work is both simplistic and creative in nature.

2 Responses

  1. I find it interesting that this particular artist not only is influenced by Buddhism, but she does abstract work with blowing glass. I feel that creates a unique experience among the modern art community. Glass is such an interesting and demanding medium. The end result produces such a provocative texture that it is hard not to fall in love with it. Great review, and I wish I could have attended the lecture.

  2. Lovely summary, she sounds like a great artist. You give an excellent description of her work. I will have to look into her further.

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