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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat

 

    Gallery exhibit draws in art aficionados

    UA professor emeritus Maurice Grossman exhibits his retrospective ceramics and containers at the recently relocated Dinnerware Contemporary Arts at 264 E. Congress St.
    UA professor emeritus Maurice Grossman exhibits his retrospective ceramics and containers at the recently relocated Dinnerware Contemporary Arts at 264 E. Congress St.

    Captivating art and sparkling conversation lit up the Dinnerware Contemporary Arts opening Downtown on Saturday night. The opening featured a retrospective ceramics exhibit by UA professor emeritus Maurice Grossman.

    The exhibit, “”Along The Way,”” is a combination of the sculptural and functional clay containers Grossman has created over the last 60 years.

    “”I’m in love with the textual quality of clay, the ability to make it talk,”” he said.

    The gallery was forced to move from its East Sixth Street location and now resides at 264 E. Congress St. The new space is smaller and a bit cramped, especially on a 100-degree evening, but the attending art enthusiasts didn’t seem to mind.

    Friends and strangers alike tapped Grossman on the shoulder wanting to greet him. Grossman welcomed each and every person with a gracious grin and it was obvious that his fan base was absolutely charmed by his work and the opportunity to see the artist in the flesh.

    I’ve always loved to experiment. The students propelled me to try new things.

    Maurice Grossman, textile sculptor

    “”He has a signature style,”” said Michelle Rouch, a local aviation artist and personal friend of Grossman. “”When you see it, you know it’s Maurice.””

    The many textile sculptures represent the inspiration Grossman takes from varying world cultures and the way they use containers for honoring the dead and storing sacred items.

    Grossman also credits his inspiration to his past art students.

    “”I’ve always loved to experiment. The students propelled me to try new things.””

    The pieces on display varied, much like the way they resonated differently with everyone there.

    “”He creates art from the soul, his work is organic and it comes straight from the heart,”” said Donna Tullar, a local admirer.

    Mini temple-like structures, vases and containers all glittered like shiny new pennies with blue glazes and textural variations. Swirl motifs and three-dimensional polka dots decorated pieces with titles like “”Zen Landscape.””

    The new project space also featured the work of Iris Hutegger, a Swiss artist touring Tucson for one year. Hutegger works with cotton string and photography to create eye-deceiving landscapes. She gets her inspiration from the environment, while illusion plays a huge part in her projects.

    Cleverly titled “”Please Hold the Line,”” Hutegger’s work blends black-and-white photography with colored thread. The exposǸ also featured real-life scenes, like a chair created with only cotton string, held up in a field of grass by invisible strings.

    “”It’s like the piece is alive,”” said Kate McHugh, a Dinnerware representative and UA art junior.

    A gentle wind in the showroom fueled the illusion of Hutegger’s artistic scenes.

    “”The success is in the movement,”” said Anna Boswell, an art education sophomore.

    Dinnerware will be hosting a lecture series with Grossman on Sept. 12, and Hutegger on Sept. 13 at 7 p.m. Their normal business hours are Tuesday-Saturday, 12-5 p.m.

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