My ceramic artwork is the result of a well-honed advertising aesthetic formed by 25 years in the Detroit advertising community. Headlines, promotional copy, logos, branding, and graphic design have all found a second voice in my personal art. The artwork borrows the language and advertising images of American culture and manipulates the content into a deeper narrative about life. This marriage of a two-dimensional message applied to a three-dimensional space is the foundation for my creativity.
To create these works, I have accumulated a library of discarded printing plates to mark the clay with impressions. The graphics of newspapers, promotional flyers, ads and logos cover the clay surface like wallpaper. Surreal and random associations between images like Coca-cola, handguns, and 40 year old newspaper headlines direct the viewer through a personal journey of picture associations.
Reminiscent of cuneiform clay tablets and stone hieroglyphics, my art brings a modern spin on those ancient clay objects. It is a commentary on the true content of our daily lives and what we feel is important. Just as archeologists sift the sands of forgotten civilizations to learn more about life in past cultures, my modern day clay objects depict the range of mass communication our society produces. The connection between Greek athletes portrayed on clay urns or Egyptian hieroglyphics may not be immediately obvious, yet my work is a modern-day American interpretation of this tradition.
Frank James Fisher