Mark Arnold, Columbia, North Carolina
Cuts and scrapes, smudges and roughed-up edges are the beauty marks covering and decorating Mark Arnold’s functional forms. Whether it be the influence of nature over impeding architecture or vice versa, Arnold creates a harmony between the gridded framework and the subtle surface irregularities. Influences of patchwork quilting, Colorfield painting , and crop sectioning in farming are all visible. Smart use of light-colored terra sigillatas over a dark clay body plays to these influences. The terra sigillata becomes part of the surface of the form rather than blanketing it, allowing the dark and irregular clay form to retain its own integrity. A final layer of black wash over the entire pot creates a distressed composition, which highlights the building imperfections and reinforces the connection to place that Arnold is exploring.