Wednesday, August 16, 2023

 “Mark and Lana are Kilning It!” 

The Jerome Artists’ Cooperative Gallery is pleased to announce its latest show, “Mark and Lana are Kilning It!” Every two months, the gallery hosts a rotation of its members in its Featured Artist Room where the artist--or artists--design and curate their own show. Next month, the JAC will exhibit a show unlike any other: artists and sweethearts Mark Galen Lucas (glass) and Lana Rochelle (ceramics) will be presenting collaborative pieces as well as new work.

Lucas will be unveiling a full-sized glass figure, “years in the making”. How many years? “I don’t even remember when I started it,” he laughs. Lana Rochelle will be showcasing totemic ceramic miniatures as well as everyday functional pottery. Both artists also have an illustrative hand and will be showing work outside their usual mediums of glass and clay. Lucas will be debuting a collection of pointillistic ink illustrations; Rochelle will be showcasing graphic batik indigo-dyed silks as well as cartoons on ceramics.

“Most of my illustrations reference the conflict between man and nature,” Mark describes. “My sculptures are more about my personal emotions, and my drawings are more about my views.” As for the as-yet-untitled full-size figure: “It’s about my anxiety, how it holds me back…it always seems like there’s a block between me and the world.”

Mark’s counterpart similarly invokes physical and emotional spaces:

“I like drawing women at ease in their own space. My illustrations on ceramics have been lighthearted; women with their lovely incorrigible cats. The batik work shows more of my internal and external worlds: the blooming yucca I see and the sadness I feel,” says Rochelle. She adds: “Even the sad work is pretty funny to me, with big melodramatic tears.”

The show will also debut the artists’ collaborative pieces where glass and ceramic are entwined in new and innovative forms.

“I’m very excited about these pieces,” says Lana, “I’ve never seen anything like them before. We didn’t even know if the glass and ceramic would work together in the kiln. But in the end we have pieces that feel very sci-fi with glass emerging like structural growths around very organic ceramic forms. ”

The JAC will have an opening reception for the artists on Saturday, August 5, in conjunction with Jerome’s First Saturday Art & Wine Walk. The gallery will be hosting local synthpop band Matteo Amaretto whose second album “Crimson Wave” came out last May. Matti Amato (lead vocals, drums, and keyboard) describes the genre-fluid band as “post-rock emo dreampop electronics.” The band will play from 4 to 8pm.

“It’s going to be loud, it’s going to be more of a party atmosphere. I hope it’s going to be very cathartic for everyone there,” laughs Lana.

“Mostly I’m excited about doing the show with Lana, seeing what we can create together,” Mark adds.

Mark and Lana are kilning it, indeed.

There is no cover charge for the August 5 reception. Beer, wine, and snacks will be available by donation. All ages welcome. “Mark and Lana are Kilning It!” will run until October 3.

The Jerome Artists’ Cooperative Gallery at 502 N Main St, ground level, is open daily from 10 am – 6 pm. Currently accepting applications for membership in all media. 928-639-4276