Andrew Snyder: Mark of a Day

Exhibtion Dates: March 24 - April 21

Andrew Snyder will be giving a 3-day performance utilizing acrylic paint as throwing water to make large scale paintings that document the throwing process. This performance will be open to the public as well as live streamed via The Linfield Gallery's Facebook Page.
image of wheel, pots and paint on the floor
Traditionally the act of throwing is merely a means to an end; the potter’s wheel, a tool. How can the means be separate from the end? The means should determine the end. There is a truthfulness to work that does not hide the manner in which it is produced. When one commands a skill, there becomes an artistry shown in the process of performing that skill. The potter’s wheel is no different. There is a long history of demonstration in the crafts, whether it is weaving, smithing, or throwing. It is a performance showing the mastery of the craftsman’s skill. Thus showing the audience the means by which the end product is derived. This series is paying tribute to the tradition of demonstration by way of performance. One is not making bowls on the potter’s wheel, but simply throwing. It is the process of throwing that matters. Still, the documentation of the process is also very important. Customarily, the act of throwing is documented simply by firing the work. However, this piece shows the passage of time on the potter’s wheel, not by producing pots, but the mark that is left from throwing for a fixed length of time. Since Andrew's roots are in blue collar production pottery, he will spend the “normal” work day of 9 am to 5 pm at the potter’s wheel, throwing nothing but small bowls. The bowls that are thrown are assembled in “boards” of 10. In production, a board is a measurement of a predetermined number of pots, and the number of pots is determined by how many will fit on a shelf; in this case, ten bowls equal one board.

Production plays a vital role in Andrew's work. In production, one learns subtleties of form that are mastered through rigorous repetition. Production is repetition. It imparts muscle memory that allows the potter to make a pot without a thought in her/his mind. This allows the potter to intuitively throw which gives their pots an honest, casual grace which cannot be faked. Additionally, there is a sense of accomplishment at the end of a day of production, proof that “I was here and I made pots.” This performance is capturing the feeling of a day of production on canvas.

As time goes on, tradition must continue to find ways of integrating with contemporary ideas so as to not be left by the wayside. Inherently, there is an indefinable quality born from objects that human hands have touched during the creative process. To investigate new methods of producing, by using traditional materials in a contemporary fashion, is vital in our current time.