Justin Donofrio – Red Lodge Clay Center

Justin DonofrioFort Collins, Colorado

Justin Donofrio grew up in Santa Cruz, CA. He holds a B.F.A. from Colorado State University, Fort Collins (2016) and received an MFA from NYSCC at Alfred University (2021). Donofrio has been a Windgate Summer Scholar at the Archie Bray Foundation, resident at Haystack Mountain School of Crafts, and Anderson Ranch Arts Center. He has been an exhibiting artist and tour co-manager with the Artstream Nomadic Gallery, in addition to being selected as one of Ceramics Monthly’s 2018 Emerging Artists. Donofrio was a participant in The Walter Gropius Master Artist Symposium at the Huntington Museum of Art in Fall of 2020.

Through the ceramic lens I focus on questions about our relationship with objects. I explore the concept of humanity’s authority over landscape and record of construction as a form of time materialized. The geographical layered strata of each vessel represent fragments or glimpses into the density of every assemblage. With the intersections and overlaps, I contemplate the dynamic relationship between materiality and landscape and our attempt to utilize it. Each vessel is made using clay that is colored to reference vibrant natural tones found in the wilderness. My work has a desire to cultivate order and my pots are designed to manicure domestic space.

Focusing on the fluidity of process and materials as remnants of making, I work with a limited number of tools and movements to allow the clay to actively inform the line quality and elegant volume. Relying heavily on the physicality of the technique I generously push and pull these lines to develop an undulation that resembles natural rhythms. The harmony of repetition comes through meditation of movement. The presence of process in the work is essential as my forms are searching for confidence in their construction. The conversation between the stained clay and glaze obscures or reveals a bodily response to a continuum between clay and ceramic.