Sterling Ruby at Cycladic: Ceramics
The Museum of Cycladic Art has invited acclaimed American artist Sterling Ruby for an intervention in the Museum’s permanent collections, showcasing a selection of his famous ceramic sculptures.
he Museum of Cycladic Art has invited acclaimed American artist Sterling Ruby for an intervention in the Museum’s permanent collections, showcasing a selection of his famous ceramic sculptures. The installation includes 21 ceramic works, some of those exhibited in the Dolly Goulandris wing.
It is the second instance, following the Ai Weiwei at Cycladic exhibition in 2016, that the Museum has invited an artist to juxtapose their work with its permanent collections. This time, Sterling Ruby, who continuously pushes the boundaries of artistic creation, places a selection of his works loaned to the Museum among the rare artifacts of its famous Cycladic Art Collection.
Ceramics have always been a crucial part of Sterling Ruby’s artistic career. The artist, who employs diverse material and aesthetic strategies across a range of mediums, including sculpture, drawing, collage, painting, and video, comes from a long tradition of California-based ceramic artists. The medium remains central to his practice, utilizing the spatial qualities of sculpting and the chromatics of painting.
The ceramic sculptures presented take a variety of forms, from smaller utilitarian objects, like mortars or ashtrays, to larger basin forms, as well as figurative, floral and totemic shapes. Ruby often combines, alters, and re-fires disused fragments from previous ceramic projects, catalyzing a cycle of reincarnation in which transitional moments and images are frozen in time. He positions the kiln as a site for ritual transformation, through which primordial and aleatory forces of nature work in tandem with his own hand in the formation of the finished art object.