Craft Arts

Pottery by Matt Kelleher

Matt Kelleher, artist

In Tandem Gallery, in Bakersville, presents the work of Matt Kelleher, beginning with an opening reception on Saturday, July 7, from 5–8 p.m., and running through August 31. Kelleher will be present at the opening to discuss his pottery, which is influenced by weather, atmosphere and the Blue Ridge Mountains.

“Matt’s work has been strongly influenced by this region due to his involvement with Penland School of Crafts, where he did a residency for three years, as well as having lived near Marshall for more than ten years,” says In Tandem co-owner Andy Palmer. “The view of the local landscape can definitely be seen in his layered slip surfaces and how the soda in the kiln firing alters the opacity of these layers.”

Kelleher’s white, semi-transparent surfaces are organic, with clay tones showing through as if the pieces are wrapped in layers of mist and fog. His clean and simple forms feature defined directional changes made up of curved silhouettes. While his forms suggest sculpture, utility is also an important element of their design.

Kelleher is currently an assistant professor of ceramics at New York State College of Ceramics at Alfred University. He has participated in residencies at Penland School of Crafts, Archie Bray Foundation and Shigaraki Ceramic Cultural Park in Shigaraki, Japan.

“I’m excited to see how Matt’s work has changed and evolved while he’s been in academia and in a totally different environment,” says Palmer. “He’s had lots of changes to his life in the past few years and seeing what comes of them will be pretty exciting.”

In Tandem Gallery is located at 20 North Mitchell Street in Bakersville. For more information, call 828.688.6428 or visit

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