Artwork > Sequoia Miller

Sequoia Miller, Cityscape, ceramics, toronto museum, deer isle Maine
Cityscape / Stadtbild, Group L

Multiple groupings and individual pieces are available.

Artist Statement, 2010

I have lived until recently in the woods outside of Olympia, Washington making quiet pottery in a peaceful place. As a native of Manhattan, however, I find a persistent tension between participating in and withdrawing from the flux of culture.

Making this work was a meditation of sorts on the relationship between my solitary, contemplative aspect and my incisive, engaged one. The boxes amass as the echo of a distant city, overlaid with the immediacy of a life surrounded by the forest. The streets are paved with clay, dug from the creek bed where I worked and saturated with the ash of incense.

In the course of making this piece I decided to move back to New York for a few years. My apartment hunt, aided by Google street view and its novel representation of place, became an unexpected source for the work. I call it Statdbild, German for Cityscape, because learning German became another unexpected yet integral aspect of my return to the city.

Grouped as the boxes are, they step away from utility and explore issues typically sub-textual for a studio potter: How do we as makers create an understanding of ourselves through our work? How do we navigate imbalances of “nature” and “culture”? How do the environments we create impact the questions we ask?