Chaos and synthesis in the ceramics of Jake Allee
Grand Junction ceramicist Jake Allee
admits that his
personality is a bit scattered, even chaotic at times.
But those are the characteristics that have come to define his
unique clay works, which have been exhibited in 34 states and seven countries.
A solo exhibition of Alleeâ€™s recent work will open at 6 p.m. this Friday at the Carbondale Clay Center, 135 Main St.
also will conduct a demonstration and workshop titled, â€œWheel Thrown and Altered Forms,â€ from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday, April 10, at the clay center.
The cost of the workshop is $30.
â€œHe has incredible energy and a strong passion for ceramics.
We want to provide him with the opportunity to show his
work here to increase awareness of his
beautiful work and to increase awareness of his
position there and within the ceramic community,â€ said K Rhynus Cesark, co-director of the clay center. Â
For the invitational show, Allee
will exhibit 40 to 50 vessels created in the last year, mostly in the last four months.
No matter when he
might be working, Allee
works to be a â€œrecord of where Iâ€™m at in time and an expression of living life as an adventure.â€
â€œMy work, essentially, is a set of forms and textures and techniques that represent my life in different ways,â€ Allee said, adding that he
vessels and forms to create meaning from an endless array of possibilities, sort of like a game of Scrabble.
â€œThe only trick to the game is spelling out the concept of utility.
Once this is achieved, I use the object for experimentation in the finished surface through firing,â€ he
says in his
suffers a bit from attention deficit disorder so crafting clay into the same shapes and forms does not hold his
â€œI kept repeating the forms and repeating them and I actually got a little bit bored with it,â€ he
clay forms apart, rearranges them, makes new ones, and does it again.
â€œItâ€™s self-perpetuating, so to speak. â€¦ It sounds eclectic and very chaotic but really itâ€™s a representation of my life,â€ Allee said.
Husband, artist, teacher, dog-owner, traveler, snowboarder, skateboarder â€" Allee says he
enjoys spreading himself into all these different facets of his
Together, it all makes up his
pots are the same way.
has been interested in ceramics since he
attended community college, where he
was going to be a painter.
But on the urging of some friends he
tried a clay class and â€œthere was no turning back,â€ he
He holds art degrees from Indian Hills Community College in Ottumwa, Iowa, the University of Iowa and the University of North Texas.
has participated in study abroad programs in Italy and Venezuela.
Among other highlights of his
artistic life, he
lists travels through Europe, Central America and elsewhere.
Allee currently teaches ceramics at Mesa State College in Grand Junction.
Teaching has been a way for him to earn a living but also to help people, he