I think of my ceramic wall reliefs as paintings; not as a substitution of clay for canvas or glaze for paint, but as an investigation of the potential of ceramic materials to create compelling images on their own terms. I like to work spontaneously, establishing a dialogue between the emerging image and my subconscious. The abstract images I create are not intended to be purely formal. The shapes and colors reference things in our world but resist absolute definition. They describe the shifting reality of life in flux. This contrasts with the permanence and materiality of clay and inspires a layered sensory response, at once tactile and visual.
The process begins with original carvings, and impressions made using tools I create in the studio. The relief image is the foundation. It forms the structural and symbolic core of the piece. Deeply cut lines then create contours and motion while also dividing the composition into unique tile shapes. The images are not composed of fragments but of discrete parts which possess their own identities. The forms are interlocking and irregular.
Color adds a third layer of interpretation as it unites or divides areas of the relief and defines the emotional essence of each piece. I work with stoneware clay and studio-mixed high fire glazes. Finished pieces are mounted and framed in hardwood maple or metal.
Scott Supraner has worked professionally in clay for 25 years. He received his BFA in Sculpture from the State University of New York, College at Purchase in 1984. After graduating, he moved to NYC where he worked for sculptors Mary Frank and Alan Siegel. In 1989, He relocated with his family to the Shenandoah Valley where he opened his first studio. He currently lives and works in Charlottesville, VA.