Mardis Nenno has been a professional ceramic artist and educator for over 25 years. She received her BFA from Montana State University and MFA from Washington State University. She is a vital part of the clay community and has participated in residencies at the Archie Bray Foundation, Helena, Montana and the Experimental Pottery Workshop, Jingdezhen, China. She has exhibited widely in the NW region with recent shows at Kolva-Sullivan Gallery, Lorinda Knight Gallery, Jundt Museum, Art Spirit Gallery and Archie Bray Foundation.
I’m interested in form as a means to come closer to a truth that I can only sense is there. In the shapes and colors and textures of the physical world I find a passageway, a fragment of language in which to describe what I see and what I know.
I like the edges between hard and soft, spontaneous and ordered. I keep making things in order to explore that edge; the seam between mass and emptiness, between my conscious mind and all that is just beneath that.
I am drawn to ordinary objects. The simple structures and tools that we use everyday bear our mark and are shaped to our hands and our needs. I’m seeking resonance in that human connection, in the architecture of utility and form, trying to find the eloquence of mute objects.
Clay has held my attention, held my hopes, held my coffee and made me hold my breath like nothing else has. In the end, my work is driven by my curiosity and a need to slow my hands