Peter Olson (Philadelphia) creates art that often presents its viewer with the question – “Is this photography or is it ceramics?” The answer of course is both. As a corporate photographer, Olson trained his eye to calculate, plan and stage. His Photo Ceramica, however, displays more of a photojournalistic style – capturing the personalities of everyday people and cultural icons. The images are then repeated and collaged onto the hand-thrown ceramic pieces to form a flurry of motion and patterns. When fired, the photographs burn away, the iron oxide in the ink leaving the images permanently burnt into the ceramic.
Olson’s photography career has spanned over 35 years and has travelled the world recording his visual experiences on film. Expanding his art, Olson learned how to throw on the wheel at The Clay Studio in Philadelphia in 2011 and has continued working with clay ever since. Olson’s Photo Ceramica has been shown in solo shows at the American Museum of Ceramic Art (AMOCA) and Peters Projects, Santa Fe, NM. His work is in the permanent collections of the Crocker Museum, AMOCA, Fuller Craft Museum, and the Athenaeum of Philadelphia.
Untitled Jar, New York City Series, 2017
18 x 8.5 in