Chris Van Dyke / Van Dyke Jewelry and Fine CraftWhen I put my energy into creating a piece of jewelry, I strive to find the balance between beauty and...
Featured Member / Clay
My work has almost always been in functional and decorative stoneware, with the occasional foray recently into Raku. Functionality has been the central theme of my work throughout my career. As such, I take great satisfaction in the relationships that I have established with my customers and friends who are using and experiencing my work on a daily basis. I feel we are vicariously sharing in each other's lives.
While still content with this idea, lately I've felt the urge to extend myself and my definition of "functionality" by creating more personal and sculpturally-oriented work. Over time, probably from teaching classes that include many clay processes, I have become more interested in slab constructions. My idea of "function" has come to include "does this piece enhance my life and the lives of the audience for my work, and/or the ultimate owners?" If it does, then it must "function" pretty well. This newer direction in my work has been fulfilling and has re-energized my functional production pieces as well. So, each nourishes the other.
While I will continue to make what is traditionally called "functional" ware, in the future I also will explore larger, more complex designs.