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Sally Gilmore 

The sensual nature of ceramics

SANDY GILMORE
  • Sandy Gilmore

Sally Gilmore is a sculptor. That much is clear. Often working in paper, fiber and textiles, Gilmore's sculpture can bring laughter and intrigue. Her newest foray into ceramics had her friends and family stunned, but for Gilmore, it is the excitement of bringing sensuality to utilitarian items that's exciting, reckoning back to her sculptural past.

While receiving her Master of Fine Art degree at the Herberger Institute for Design and the Arts in Tempe, Ariz., Gilmore primarily explored the world of fiber. Often using Japanese paper to create elaborate paper mâché, Gilmore's sculptures often connected the reproduction of the plant world to the reproduction of the human world in a playful, fun way.

It was the arrival of a kiln in her home that beckoned Gilmore to explore. "That's the ugly truth. It fell into my lap," Gilmore admits. But it was this circumstance, combined with the desire to be part of the ever-growing maker's community that was popping up in the Pacific Northwest, that led Gilmore to her next adventure in ceramics.

All of Gilmore's ceramics are slab built, each piece hand-rolled with giant rolling pins. Gilmore often uses the techniques used in sculpting fiber—often starting her design process with paper and creating templates she then transfers to clay. You can see this in work that looks delicate and fine—and you can also feel it.

click to enlarge SANDY GILMORE
  • Sandy Gilmore

"I've been thinking about shape and texture and form, because I want them to feel sensual when you hold them. The texture is important and the way it feels against your skin," Gilmore explains. The desire to create beautiful, useful objects drives Gilmore to continue to explore this new world of ceramics. It is so satisfying to make these things that will go into someone's home and they will cherish it and love drinking their coffee out of it in the morning. I think there is some power in that."

Still, Gilmore has no desire to stop here. While time hasn't allowed Gilmore to explore her love of fiber and paper more, she does plan on getting back into that in the near future. For now, though, Gilmore finds living in Bend a supportive arts community that has embraced her new world of exploration and inspired her to keep going deeper and share what she finds.

Sally Gilmore

Pottery available at The Workhouse, 50 Scott Street #6

sallyhaydengilmore.com

Instagram: @sallygilmore


About The Author

Teafly Peterson

For the last 20 years, I have been working as an artist and an educator. Some days I am better at one than the other. The good days are when I am excellent at both simultaneously. I love those days. I teach a variety of mediums– painting, drawing, photography, writing, film making. Mostly what I teach is how to...
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