Kyla Culbertson, Canton, Illinois

Picture a living room: a fireplace, a window, a sofa with pillows, and side tables. Within this vignette, swap all assumed warm color and texture of these furnishings for stark white cardboard detailed only with simple black outlines. This is the setting in which Kyla Culbertson displays vibrant terra-cotta vessels that contrast wildly with their surroundings and beg the question of whether they belong.

1 Double Loop Vessel, 22 in. (56 cm) in height, earthenware, fired to cone 02 in oxidation, 2018.

Pops of color, volume, and tactility within the flattened, washed-out world, these objects are accessories—atypical from the referenced traditional space, but ornate and intentional in their stature and repetition. Resembling vases in size and silhouette, each is removed from the realm of functionality as they have been built as hollow, enclosed forms. Thin coils pressed into place circle and loop around the forms, dividing space through decoration, and extend off the rims like playful crowns. Culbertson asserts that these vessels “mimic the non-functionality of a home souvenir.” The viewer is left to search for connections between the vessels and the setting, and in turn, can begin to question the function of the objects that occupy and accessorize their own domestic spaces. Instagram: @culbertsonkylaFacebook: @kyla.culbertson


2 Living Room, 26 ft. (7.9 m) in width, earthenware, fired to cone 02 in oxidation, cardboard, paint, 2018.
Topics: Ceramic Artists