Juror: Emily Zilber
March 18-April 22, 2016
Reception: Friday, April 1, 6:00-8:00pm

The Brookline Arts Center is pleased to present Conceptual Clay, Hot Art. Ceramics are one of the longest lasting indicators of culture. With this in mind, the Brookline Arts Center invited Massachusetts based ceramic artists to submit their most conceptual works in clay, looking for work that provokes thought through use of color, shapes, unexpected details and unique functionality. Works include a range of abstract sculptures, vessels as art and interdisciplinary installations.

Conceptual Clay, Hot Art was juried by Emily Zilber, Museum of Fine Arts, Boston’s first Ronald L. and Anita C. Wornick Curator of Contemporary Decorative Arts. Selected artists include Renata Cassiano Alvarez, Robert ChamberlinBill CohnRachel EngGreg LookerseLeslie MacklinMarc MancusoDavid McCoyRobert ShilesMia Rosenblatt Tinkjian and Hanna Vogel.


Emily Zilber is the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston’s first Ronald L. and Anita C. Wornick Curator of Contemporary Decorative Arts. Since 2010, Zilber has been responsible for the MFA’s vibrant program of contemporary decorative arts, including guiding acquisitions and developing a presence for craft and design in the Linde Family Wing for Contemporary Art and throughout the museum.  Zilber oversees the Daphne and Peter Farago Gallery, a dedicated space for modern and contemporary craft, design and decorative arts.  This gallery opened in September 2011 with “Crafting Contemporary: Selections from the Daphne Farago Collection.”  Recent projects include the exhibition “New Blue-and-White”, which focused on contemporary interpretations of blue-and-white traditions by artists across media (2013) and the reinstallation of the Farago Gallery with works from the MFA’s permanent collection. Current projects include the exhibitions “Nature, Sculpture, Abstraction and Clay: 100 Years of American Ceramics” (opened January 2015) and “Crafted: Objects in Flux,” (opened August 2015), which is accompanied by a full-length publication.

Prior to joining the MFA, Zilber was Assistant Curator at Cranbrook Art Museum at Cranbrook Academy of Art in Bloomfield Hills, Michigan.  She has edited and written for numerous publications, speaks regularly on topics related to 20th and 21st-century decorative arts, craft and design, and is a founding member of the Boston-based consortium The Commonwealth of Craft.  Zilber holds a BA in Art History from the University of Chicago and an MA from the Bard Graduate Center for Decorative Arts, Design History and Material Culture.

From Emily Zilber:

“I am so honored to have had the opportunity to jury this exhibition and to get to know the work of the extremely talented artists on view.

Their submissions give us a sense of the diverse spectrum of possibility available to artists working in ceramics today. From vessels to sculpture to installation to video to performance, clay is a medium that can carry a myriad of conceptual and asthetic approaches.

The artists included in this exhibition are prime examples of this exciting field in our present moment. I congratulate them on their vision and skill, and congratulate the Brookline Arts Center on their sponsorship of such a timely exhibition.”