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Artist ID: 2403

My ceramic sculpture addresses different associations with both function and clay as a material. Many recognize ceramics as an art medium, but fail to consider its applications in industry. The forms I sculpt reference new tools and technology such as 3D printers, rapid prototyping equipment, and manufacturing equipment. Through a juxtaposition of surface treatments, I am able to recontextualize each machine to illustrate the versatility of clay. I achieve this by incorporating ceramic decals and surface patterns creating highly decorative finishes and combining them with distressed metallic surfaces.
The notion of function is explored by incorporating microcontrollers and various electrical components such as motors, toggle switches, LCD screens, and lights are implemented within each piece. Many are influenced by personal experiences and frustrations I have encountered with technology. Text screens are used in many pieces to present the viewer with a problem instructing them to either wait or restart the device. As a result, the viewer becomes the operator of each sculpture by making a static object come alive in the gallery.

Austin Wieland was born and raised in Bryan, Ohio. He received his BFA from Miami University of Ohio in 2011 with a studio concentration in Ceramics and a minor in Arts Management. After completing his undergraduate work he spent a year as an instructor teaching Beginning Ceramics at Miami University. In 2015 he graduated from Edinboro University of Pennsylvania with a MFA in Ceramics. Wieland has completed a number of artist residencies and has been featured in numerous national and international exhibitions. Currently, Wieland is the Assistant Professor of Ceramics and Sculpture at LaGrange College in LaGrange, Georgia.

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