Finding her niche in Carbondale
Glenwood Springs, CO Colorado
CARBONDALE, Colorado ” Sometimes people fall into something because it feels easy and right. Not Lauren Mabry. An artist all her life, many forms of creativity came simply to her. She was painting and drawing since she was little, even doing cross-stich at the age of 10. But when she finally came across ceramics in high school, it was challenging and new and unnatural. It felt like learning a foreign language, she explained. And she still hasn’t been able to get enough.
Right now, you can see the new artist-in-residence’s cups and bowls ” and letter boxes, too ” at CCC’s Annual Holiday Sale.
“Well, Carbondale’s definitely it’s own universe, which I like. I felt like I fit right in here. Within a week of living here, I already had a job and started meeting everybody in the community. And everybody knows everybody. It’s like, instead of six degrees of separation, it’s like two degrees in Carbondale.”
“When I was 5. I mean, probably before then, even, but in kindergarten we did an “All About Me” book, where they give you a blank book and then each page has a different thing you had to color on and fill in the blanks with words. It was like “When I grow up, I want to be…” And I had it narrowed down at that point to a zookeeper or an artist. And, while I still love animals, I don’t think I’d want to be a zookeeper anymore. But the artist thing worked out. Or, you know, I’m trying to get it worked out.” (Laughing)
“I’m still figuring that out on a daily basis. It definitely celebrates ornament and the history of ornament, but it’s also definitely about being used. I really enjoy things with a highly specific function, and it directs about what to make. You know, the letter boxes that I make, they have a really, highly specific function, and so, knowing that they’re supposed to fit letters, I say, ‘OK, I have to figure out how big a letter is.’ It just like gives you a starting point to direct you, to direct your creativity.”
“I see my work, and it’s really, it’s historical in some ways. People say, ‘Oh, this looks like..,’ ‘It reminds me of…’ Not so much what I’m doing now, but some of it is pretty loud, and it’s pretty over-the-top, and it’s kind of gaudy, a lot of it. But it’s calmed down. That’s what Sanam (Emami, a professor at Colorado State University, who she studied under) ” she kind of chilled me out a little bit. Just got me to come back to the basics, somewhat.”
“Yeah. It’s busy. It’s busy.”
“Yeah, my surfaces are definitely calming down a little bit, and I’m paying more attention to details, like the really fine, kind of more of the subtleties of form and function. I’m throwing more pots now is the difference ” more cups, more intimate objects. The letter boxes, they don’t touch your mouth, you know what I mean? They’re not in your hands. So, I didn’t have to pay so much attention to the subtleties with those.”
is? “In my life? I think just trying to be, you know, a happy, healthy person. I definitely prioritize ceramics to a lot of things. Really, I’m following opportunities right now. I’m willing to go where the opportunity is to enrich my ceramic knowledge and enrich all the experiences that I’ve had and just getting to meet other artists. I mean, that’s what’s really important, for me, right now. That’s what’s important for me right now, but you know, I think having a good attitude is definitely on the top of the list, too.”
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