On The Square

All Things that Go "Ting!" at The New York Ceramics & Glass Fair

By Jessica Helen Weinberg

Jan 25,2017 | 14:00 EST

We may not have gotten much snow in New York City this weekend but there certainly was a flurry of exciting art fair openings and seasonal auctions! The Outsider Art Fair, The Winter Antiques Show, as well as the start of Americana week arrived in annual style. After a marathon of openings, Bidsquare decided to cool off its "art world jets" by strolling through two floors of the Bohemian National Hall to admire 30 top-tier Galleries, Private Dealers and Artists from around the world at The New York Ceramics & Glass Fairs 18th anniversary exhibition. 

The elevator doors opened up to a village of vendors, all shining under an immense white ceiling, flanked by crystal chandeliers. The exposed terrace, wrapping completely around the space, beamed brightly from above like a microcosmic slice of the Galeries Lafayette mall in Paris. Spotlights hit and reflected their showcases at every angle as we weaved through the myriad of transparent walls, filled with porcelain, enamels and all things that go “Ting!” when tapped.

Lacoste Gallery, Left to right: Karen Karnes, Untitled, 1981; Stoneware; Karen Karnes, Untitled, Stoneware, 2002; Lacostegallery.com

For postwar ceramic lovers, finding Karen Karnes is like running into an old friend or perhaps a loving mother figure; this is especially true since her recent passing on July 12, 2016. Sculptures by Karnes contain a transcendent ability; commanding attention from a mile away. The undeniable gravity which surrounds them is what easily pulled us into Lacoste Gallery’s installation. Lucy Lacoste of Lacoste Gallery welcomed a closer look at the wood-fired beauties she had on display as well as an array of wonderfully textured and diverse pieces by artists such as Warren Mackenzie, Arnie Zimmerman and Nina Hole. 

Hideaki Miyamura, Iridescent bottle forms; nyceramicsandglass.com

Meeting an artist at the same time as their work can be an unexpected and humbling experience, even more so when it happens to be Hideaki Miyamura. Miyamuras ceramics are thrown to such a degree of perfection that it is hard to believe they arent actually imported from an alien-world, where liquid metal falls naturally from leaves, hardening into varying sized dew drops (a relatively realistic assumption). When asked about his current glaze-palette he smiled and casually remarked that he had just been "experimenting"- a fabulously simple answer for an artist whose masterful glazes have earned him a place in the permanent collections of honorable institutions such as the Asian Art Museum of San Francisco, San Franisco, CA; Art Institute of Chicago, Chicago, IL and The Museum of Arts and Design, New York, NY.

Flat Pitcher Collection / Vetro Vero (Michael Schunke & Josie Gluck); nyceramicsandglass.com

TOJ | Akiko Hirai, Moon Jar. Wheel- thrown stoneware with porcelain and slip, oxides 

We continued to move through intersecting displays of ceramic and glassware arrangements, connecting centuries of tradition; psychedelic Mochaware from the late 1700s adorned the shelves of Martyn Edgell Antiques, followed by a contemporary, colossal "Moon Jar" at TOJ Gallery and Italian inspired glass from Vetro Vero. We paid a visit to Cliff Lee of Lee Gallery Studios, admired the student works installed by The Columbia Teachers College and happened onto Gary Atkins from London who humored us with a lovely 19th century, Pearlware Jug - painted and inscribed with a cheerful poem. We admired the many marvels at Jeffery S. Evans and peeked into the glass box which contained the American "Holy Grail" punch bowl from 1770, the oldest known American hard-paste porcelain pot ever discovered.  

Jeffrey S. Evans & Associates | Important Anna Pottery, Anna, Illinois salt-glazed stoneware 

Whether we encountered works by emerging artists or those bore from a craftsmens hands during the American Revolution, The New York Ceramics & Glass Fair made room for them all. The range of styles, mediums and time periods accommodated within one event, celebrated the ambitious undertaking of housing and absorbing so many extradordinary objects all in the ease of one Sunday afternoon visit to the Bohemian National Hall. 

The New York Ceramics & Glass Fair took place on January 19-22, 2017 at the historic Bohemian National Hall, 321 East 73rd Street in New York City. Click here to visit their webpage.