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A Way Through by Erin Paradis

Opening Reception: Saturday, June 17th from 6-9 PM

Exhibition Runs: June 18 - July 16, 2023

A Way Through by Erin Paradis translates her observations of the natural and unnatural environments that absorb her surroundings into ceramic works.  Those encounters become shapes, objects, and compositions that seemingly ordinary spaces reveal to her. The ceramic pieces are recollections of these spatial encounters, an impression of line, texture, and color. Paradis highlights the spark of intrigue that occurs when we first become captivated by something new. 


“I enjoy the visual encounters that give me pause and respite from tensions in my life. The grid of white window panes against the texture of weathered wood shingles, the outline of trees set behind colorful, centuries-old brick buildings edged with an embankment of jagged rocks; these moments of recognition cause stillness for me, and I feel curiosity and calm.  My work is a recollection of these spatial encounters, mimicking line, texture, and color. I abstractly materialize particular instances through installations of my sculptural forms and their relationships to one another.” -Erin Paradis.

For Paradis, A Way Through creates an environment encompassed by her visual lexicon. A slow-building narrative that occupies its own dimensions and presents the viewer with an entry point to that world- a physical space that promotes intellectual openness, a portal to curiosity, and a moment to pause. Her practice is about the long game; by building a library of forms, she investigates in her studio through an evolution of renditions and interpretations. Objects in clay become an evolving language, such as the arch, a recurring shape in her work. And the Arch will play a dominant role in how this exhibition will inhabit the space.


“An arch frames the space around it in a particular way that I gravitate towards compulsively.”  -Erin Paradis.


The compilation of built ceramic forms becomes Paradis’s architecture, evolving, layering, and rearranging these visual touchstones. She materializes spatial encounters where viewers find intrigue and pause to ponder their significance and origin.  


Erin Paradis is a ceramic sculptor living and working in Minneapolis, Minnesota.  She received her MFA from the University of Minnesota and her BFA from Alfred University.  She has worked extensively as an artist, resident, business owner, and instructor at art centers and academic settings nationally and internationally.  Erin lectured Ceramics and Sculpture from 2015-2020 at the University of Minnesota and currently instructs at Northern Clay Center.  She received the MSAB Artist Initiative Grant in 2017 and 2020, the Open Studio Fellowship through Franconia Sculpture Park in 2018, the recipient of the 2019 Jerome Ceramic Artist Project Grant, and the 2021 Early Career Project Grant through Forecast Public Arts.  Most recently, Paradis installed her piece Encountering the Subtle Threshold in 2021 at Silverwood Park in St. Anthony, MN.

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