Artist Talk with Grace Nickel

Grace Nickel Artist Talk
February 3, 2022
7:00 pm CT on zoom
Register HERE

The Manitoba Craft Council is excited to partner with Gallery 1C03 to present an artist talk with Grace Nickel as part of our “Year of Eco-Craft” and in conjunction with Nickel’s forthcoming Eruptions exhibition at Gallery 1C03.

Grace Nickel is an artist and educator living in Winnipeg, Manitoba. Her studio practice focusses on sculptural ceramics and installation. She has won awards in international competitions including the Mino International Ceramics Competition in Japan and the Taiwan Ceramics Biennale, and has had numerous solo exhibitions in Canada including at the Art Gallery of Nova Scotia, the Winnipeg Art Gallery in Manitoba, the Moose Jaw Museum & Art Gallery in Saskatchewan, and the Art Gallery of Burlington in Ontario. Her work has been widely collected and is included in the permanent collections of the Museum of Modern Ceramic Art in Gifu, Japan, the New Taipei City Yingge Ceramics Museum, Taiwan, and the Fule International Ceramic Art Museums project in Fuping, China. Her work has been selected for the Cheongju International Craft Biennale in Korea, and for several NCECA Annual Exhibitions (Philadelphia, Portland). Grace Nickel has completed numerous residencies including at the Pottery Workshop in Jingdezhen, China and the Banff Centre for the Arts in Alberta. She held the position of Adjunct Research Fellow at the Curtin University of Technology in Western Australia and has travelled abroad extensively to present lectures, including recent invitations from the Clayarch Gimhae Museum and AK Ceramics Centre in South Korea, and the Australian Ceramics Triennale in Hobart, Tasmania. Nickel received her BFA from the University of Manitoba and MFA from NSCAD University. She is a member of the Royal Canadian Academy of the Arts and currently teaches as Associate Professor at the University of Manitoba School of Art.

Nickel’s talk will focus on Eruptions, an exhibition of new and recent work in which she collects, studies, transforms and memorializes felled trees and forest fragments in porcelain. Nickel applies an archaeobotanical lens to her investigations, referencing the past and present with regard to the life cycle of living organisms and to varied forms and functions of ceramics production. Nickel’s work also considers how the micro struggle for survival reflects the macro crises in which we find ourselves today, with climate change and resulting environmental catastrophes top of mind.

Eruptions demonstrates Nickel’s virtuosic incorporation of diverse ceramic techniques alongside future-facing experiments which reveal the transformative potential of clay. Through experimentation in 3D-printing with her collaborator, Michael Zajac, delicate porcelain plumes that burst forth from Eruptions are re-envisioned as other-worldly ink jet prints. Limb-like Pyres resembling tree trunks support miniature forms that reference funerary rituals and provision for the afterlife. Root-likeLifelines emerge and stretch skyward suggesting networks of support and the possibility of passage to a new life. An apt creative response to the present time, Eruptions evokes messages of fragility and grief but also hope and resilience.

Gallery 1C03’s presentation of Eruptions, originally scheduled to open on January 13, 2022, has been postponed to help mitigate the spread of COVID-19. Please check back on Gallery 1C03’s website in February for new exhibition dates.