Nina Kawar

Meet the Artist

  • About This Artist

    Nina Kawar is a sculptor whose creative practice explores and aims to push the boundaries of porcelain through the process of carving and delicate forms. The elusive and often fragile sculptures derive from an intrigue with the human condition and healing. Many of her influences stem from psychology, biology, and spirituality. She was born and raised in a Palestinian American home in Wisconsin and received a Masters of Fine Arts in Ceramics in 2014 from Clemson University.

  • Q&A With This Artist

    A: Each piece in this porcelain collection is hand-built and sculpted. Depending on the form, the sculptures are constructed with coil building, slabs, and numerous carving techniques. Intuitively following the lead of the material, I am often carving in fine detail and creating textures that evoke a sense of decay which embodies the beauty in the imperfect. In this "Fungi" series, the porcelain work is fired to cone 6, finished with multiple layers of gouache, sanded and sealed.

    A: Porcelain is a material that makes my heart sing. It’s visceral and silky texture is alluring, while mirroring the sense of flow I have been mindful to embrace in my everyday life. I also love its pure white color, which inspires me to see the form from a perspective that highlights each undulation. Through the years I have come to understand the language of porcelain, in a sense that I enjoy its ability to endure multiple processes, stages and the risk of pushing its limits.

    A: Often my work is abstract in nature and it comes from a place of listening. Creating from an intuitive place, the porcelain leads me down a path towards a playful and loose technique. Carving is a space in which I am able to let go of control and listen to the material; quieting the mind and following the lead of the clay. My recent series " Fungi", is my first representation body of work and it has been a beautiful journey as I continue to intuitively create, while directly referencing nature.

    A: I am always finding inspiration from nature and its compelling forms. Whether it be from mushrooms, plants, trees, the mountains, or the elements; I am taking in its movement, patterns and the sense of change exhibited in nature. I take it in through a stroll in the woods, images in books, growing my own mushrooms, or through others photographs within my communities. Another form of inspiration comes from researching multiple topics within psychology, biology and metaphysics.

    A: Craft's diversity within material and its expression through the artist allows for people of all cultures to take in a story exhibited through form. Regardless of language, I believe that as a creator, we have the ability to speak to the hearts of those who choose to engage in our work. Whether it be a sculpture, a vessel or clothing, there are often universal human conditions, emotions or memories that are evoked through its form and its process.

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