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John Balistreri

Professor, Ceramics
Area Head, Ceramics

MFA, Kent State University, 1988
BFA, Kansas City Art Institute, 1986

See John Balistreri’s personal website

Courses Taught
ARTS 3720 Ceramics II
ARTS 3730 Ceramics III
ARTS 4090
ARTS 4740 Advanced Ceramics
ARTS 4780 Senior Studio in Ceramics

Areas of Research/Artistic Focus
My recent work has been a continuation of my involvement with the ancient process of wood firing. In 1994, I began to concentrate on using this process in an attempt to make objects that resonate with age, both geologic and human. I have built objects from our mechanized, industrial world, which are obvious and recognizable to the viewer, such as barrels, anvils, wrenches and jubs. The construction and firing of these objects transform them into contemporary artifacts, which tie geologic and human history to our contemporary condition. They also serve as specific commentary on the genre of wood firing.

In addition to industrial objects, I have been making pieces that are more universal in content, directly reflecting nature. These forms combine both biological and geological elements, which are also subjected to the violent, transforming process of the wood kiln.

Most recently, I have begun to incorporate the figure into both veins of my work via heads and brains. This allows an expanded sense of narrative that implicates modern man's tenuous relationship to his environment, both natural and artificial.

Recent Accomplishments
International and National shows include:
"Ceramic International Exhibition," Zanesville Art Center, Ohio
"Ceramics Monthly International Competition," 1999
Scripps Invitational, Claremont CA
Great Lakes Annual Ceramic Show, Lill Street Gallery, Chicago
NCECA national juried show
Frederick R. Wiseman Art Museum, Minneapolis
Inaugural show at the Kemper Museum of Contemporary Art, Kansas City.

Recent publications include articles in:
Ceramics: Art and Perception
Ceramics Monthly
American Craft
American Ceramics

Recent awards include:
Emerging Talent award at the 1995 NCECA Conference, Minneapolis
Balistreri's work is included in public and private collections throughout the United States and is represented by the Sherry Leedy Gallery in Kansas City.


Faculty member at BGSU since 1996