Adventures in Non-Functional Art: The Big Black Box

Today I was digging through drafts I’ve written and left sit unpublished. I thought it’d be fun to tidy one up and post it. This one was a post I wrote during a #postaday challenge. I think the prompt was:

Express Yourself!

Do you love to dance, sing, write, sculpt, paint, or debate? What’s your favorite way to express yourself, creatively?

– – – – – – – – –
2014122895200910“Can you make something non-functional?” I was talking to my ceramics instructor my first year in college and he thought I had made enough bowls, plates, and mugs. I really had made more plates, mugs, bowls, and any type of container than I knew what to do with and everyone I knew got some of my work for Christmas that year. But I liked making functional things!

I signed up for the class partly because of my interest in crafty artsy things and partly because the husband of my cousin taught the class and he was a really cool guy. I wasn’t terribly happy at school so I wanted to at least do something. So ceramics class it was. And choir, choir was awesome too.

Since I do like artsy crafty things, I knew I would enjoy the class, but I wasn’t sure if I’d be any good at it. I’m still not sure if I was any good at it, but I really enjoyed it and in that first year away from home it was about the only thing that brought me joy. I’d spend extra time in the studio throwing pots, getting incredibly muddy, and having the time of my life.

That being said, I was pretty snarky about the assignment to make something non-functional. After tons and tons of whining I came up with what I called The Black Box. It was really just that, a black glazed block of ceramic slab about a foot and a half high, 5 inches wide and 8 or so inches deep.  I even made up a story about it, you know, so I could be like a real artist. And then I went back to making plates and bowls.

2 comments

  1. You know, it just occurred to me that you didn’t offer to take this very cool and *useful* item off my hands! Much love, your sister.

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