Shannon Webb – Red Lodge Clay Center

Shannon WebbRed Lodge, Montana

Red Lodge Clay Center – Short-Term Resident (AIA) 2023, Long-Term Resident 2023

Shannon was born and raised on the island O‘ahu of Hawai‘i. There she attended the University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa and graduated with a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree focusing in ceramics. She has recently received her MFA at the University of Montana, creating sculptures with ceramics and mixed media materials such as resin.

What people call spirit or soul—I think of it as a kind of energy that flows through all things. My artwork is about being receptive to these energies in order to understand my place in the world and to move through it in a meaningful way. Currently, this concerns the estrangement from my Korean heritage, a displacement from home, and how those energies collide with the ones here in Montana.

I embrace my mixed race and upbringing as who I am, which also means that I feel responsible for the cultural growth that can emerge from this ambiguous identity. Traditionally, teachings are passed down through stories. Stories are made real through images and sculptures. We acknowledge these realities through practice. I start by practicing reverence for the world through my own means. These actions are seeded from tradition, but adapted to fulfill my needs. It could involve a specific interaction with the land, celebrating a celestial event, or a gesture of gratitude. I take those experiences and make them real through ceramic and mixed media sculptures, alluding to the core concepts through symbolic representation. Flowers, water, human and animal figures are recurring symbols I use to communicate transformation, interconnectivity, and the presence of spiritual energy. My art is a process to understand my intentions as I create my own path in the world and a reflection on what I leave behind.