Athens, Ga. – The Georgia Museum of Art at the University of Georgia will host the exhibition “Pick of the Kiln: The Work of Michael Simon” July 20 through Sept. 8.
The exhibition features 79 pieces of pottery by Michael Simon, a local artist who uses a salt kiln to fire his work. This creates a varying surface and does not require separate glazing process.
The exhibition will illustrate the changes in Simon’s work over time as well as his shifting interests as an artist. In the mid-1980s, Simon began keeping one pot from every kiln he fired in order to document how his work evolved and changed subtly. The selected pots make up the exhibition.
The pieces in the exhibition were selected by Caroline Maddox, the museum’s director of development and the curator of the exhibition, in collaboration with Simon.
Dale Couch, curator of decorative arts at the museum, said the exhibition shows a leading ceramic artist’s view of his own work as it develops over time. “It simultaneously reveals the chronology of his work and the creative consciousness of the artist. These are brilliant examples of modern craft,” he said.
Simon, born and raised in Minnesota, has lived in the Athens area for many years. He attended the University of Minnesota, where he studied under nationally acclaimed potter Warren MacKenzie. Simon moved to Georgia in 1970. He lived at Happy Valley, a pottery commune outside of Athens established by a friend and former classmate at Minnesota. He received a master of fine arts degree in ceramics from the University of Georgia in 1981.
A reception for the exhibition will be held Aug. 25 with a group discussion at 1:30 p.m. in the museum’s M. Smith Griffith Auditorium. Potter Mark Shapiro will moderate the discussion.
Partial support for the exhibition and programs at the Georgia Museum of Art is provided by the Georgia Council for the Arts through appropriations of the Georgia General Assembly. The council is a partner agency of the National Endowment for the Arts. Individuals, foundations and corporations provide additional museum support through their gifts to the University of Georgia Foundation. The Georgia Museum of Art is located in the Performing and Visual Art Complex on the East Campus of the University of Georgia. The address is 90 Carlton St., University of Georgia, Athens, Ga. 30602-6719. For more information, including hours, see http://www.georgiamuseum.org or call 706-542-GMOA (4662).