Richmond, Virginia United States
Available for work
Stacey Ellis grew up in Richmond, Virginia, and always has had a love for the arts. She began taking art classes through the Visual Arts Center of Richmond as a child where she learned the basics of working with clay, as well as fiber. She continued taking courses there through high school, and it became the foundation for the skills she would use through her time at Virginia Commonwealth University. She gets a lot of inspiration from travel, and spent a summer abroad studying in St. Petersburg, Russia, where she enjoyed visiting the Hermitage. Russian history and culture often informs her work formally and conceptually. She currently is in her last semester at VCU and will be graduating in December 2012.
Our human bodies are imperfect, fragile machines, yet they possess so much beauty in their flaws and fragility. We go through our lives collecting our own history, and in doing so collect physical scars that give those around us a small glimpse into our past and our vulnerabilities. These scars represent our own mortality, as well as give signs to others that we have truly lived. Many consider scars to be disfigurement and defect, but I see beauty in them. Each scar represents a story, a mystery of interest, something intriguing about a personâ€™s life. That to me is captivating and one of the greatest gifts our bodies have given us.
I use clay in my work for its fleshy qualities which lends itself well to capturing human vulnerability. During the wet steps of the process the clay acts like a soft skin that I can manipulate. I alter the clay to mimic human injuries, like cutting with knives and hitting with paddles. I then heal over the injuries, leaving the work scarred, showing the history of how I harmed my pieces. I also work with complex glazes that resemble unhealthy flesh. With these processes I explore variations of the human figure, experimenting with which body parts are shown, and which are not, and how that effects the perception of the form. I want the viewer to wonder what these bodies have been through in life, and to find interest and beauty in the flaws.
Skills ceramics, drawing, weaving, knitting, hot glass, lampworking