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Artist: Ben Bates


Artist: Ben Bates
Ben Bates, ILLINOIS
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ARTIST STATEMENT
I am interested in the functional format as a realm of exploration, but I strive for my pieces to transcend their utilitarian boundaries and function as sculptural elements. I use the ideals of the vessel to clarify design and explore form as it relates to space. To me working in clay is more about composition, proportion and surface than it is about efficiency of use.

The dualities of this medium continually fascinate me. In my process I play with the plasticity of the material and its ability to capture spontaneous movement in form and surface. I then contrast it by introducing hard edges and lines that interrupt and accentuate the flow of that softness. I also want the skin of my pieces to heighten the viewer’s awareness of the interior volume and function as a canvas for color and decoration.

My hope is to make pieces that are able to communicate feelings and ideas without recalling specific objects. I intend for these compositions to be mysterious and open-ended enough to evoke multiple interpretations.

EDUCATION
1998 MFA in Ceramics, Southern Illinois University Edwardsville, Edwardsville, IL
Instructors: Dan Anderson and Paul Dresang

1995 
BFA in Ceramics, Kansas City Art Institute, Kansas City, MO
Instructors: Ken Ferguson, Victor Babu, George Timock and Pete Pinnell

1991 - 1993 
Long Beach City College, Long Beach, CA


TEACHING EXPERIENCE
2005 - Present
Adjunct Faculty, Ceramics College of Lake County, Grayslake, IL

2005 - Present

Ceramics Studio Technician College of Lake County, Grayslake, IL

2004 - 2006

Adjunct Faculty, Art, Oakton Community College, Des Plaines, IL

Drawing Instructor


Ceramics Sabbatical Replacement


2003 - 2005

Art Department Chair, Woodlands Academy, Lake Forest, IL

Ceramics Instructor – Ceramics Area Head


Art Instructor



RELATED EXPERIENCE
2005 – Present
CLC Ceramics Club Advisor, College of Lake County, Grayslake, IL

2010

Curator: Teapots: An Invitational. Robert T. Wright Gallery, Grayslake, IL

Juror, Art Fair on the Square, Lake Forest, IL


Artist Lecture and Demonstration. Southern Illinois University Edwardsville, Edwardsville, IL


Lead Organizer for Annual “Empty Bowls” project (1000 + Bowls). College of Lake County, Grayslake, IL


2009

“Train” Wood Kiln Building Workshop. Lead Organizer for Annual “Empty Bowls” project (800 + Bowls). College of Lake County, Grayslake, IL

2008

Curator: Ted Neal and Charity Davis-Woodard Ceramics. Robert T. Wright Gallery, Grayslake, IL

Artist Lecture and Demonstration. Ball State University, Muncie, IN


2006

Soda Kiln Building Workshop. College of Lake County, Grayslake, IL

2004

Personal Studio Assistant to Ruth Duckworth. Chicago, IL

1998 - 2003

Resident Ceramic Artist, Crab Tree Farm and Museum, Lake Bluff, IL

2002

Artist Lecture and Demonstration, Oakton Community College, Des Plaines, IL

2001

Artist Lecture and Demonstration, Sterling Hall Ceramic Arts Center, Lake Forest, IL

1999 - 2001

Lead Consultant, Sterling Hall Ceramic Arts Center, Lake Forest, IL

1998

Artist Lecture and Demonstration, Forest Park Community College, St. Louis, MO

1993 - 1995

Personal Studio Assistant to Ken Ferguson, Shawnee Mission, Kansas


EXHIBITIONS

2010
Illinois Clay, Lillstreet Art Center, Chicago, IL

Cup-o-rific, Schaller Gallery, Red Lodge, MT


Recent Works, Robert T. Wright Gallery of Art, Grayslake, IL, Award of Merit


Bowl-ing, Schaller Gallery, Red Lodge, MT


″Cup″: A National Invitational, The Lawrence Art Center, Lawrence, KS


Lillstreet International: Bowl Me Over, Lillstreet Art Center, Chicago, IL


Burnt, Schaller Gallery, Red Lodge, MT


Art of the Pot, Austin, TX


Yunomi Invitational, AKAR Gallery, Iowa City, IA


Scholl Gallery Fine Art Show, Scholl Gallery of Art, North Chicago, IL


Members Exhibition, Robert T. Wright Gallery of Art, Grayslake, IL


2009

CLC Art Faculty Exhibition, Robert T. Wright Gallery of Art, Grayslake, IL

National Teapot Invitational, Perkinson Art Gallery, Decatur, IL, Best of Show Award


Linearity, AKAR Gallery, Iowa City, IA


Generations, LaPorte County Convention & Visitors Bureau, Michigan City, IN


Watershed Wood Fire Exhibition, Gustin Gallery, Dartmouth, MA


Members Exhibition, Robert T. Wright Gallery of Art, Grayslake, IL


Dichotomy, Atrium Gallery at Ball State University, IN


Yunomi Invitational, AKAR Gallery, Iowa City, IA


Beyond the Brickyard, Archie Bray Foundation, Helena, MT


2008

Earthy and Opulent, Deer Path Art Gallery, Lake Forest, IL

Bottles, The Lawrence Art Center, Lawrence, KS


Recent Works, Robert T. Wright Gallery of Art, Grayslake, IL


Lillstreet International, Lillstreet Art Center, Chicago, IL


Platters and Pourers, Baltimore Clayworks, Baltimore, MD


History in the Making III, Genesee Center for the Arts, Rochester, NY, Third Place Award


George Ohr National Challenge, Ohr - O′Keefe Museum of Art, Biloxi, MS


National Cup Show, Barrett Art Center, Poughkeepsie, NY, Honorable Mention Award


8th Annual National Juried Cup Show, Downtown Gallery, Kent, OH


American Studio Ceramics, Ball State University Museum, Muncie, IN


Ten Years from E’ville: Ben Bates and Ted Neal, Gallery 308, Muncie, IN.


Yunomi Invitational, AKAR Gallery, Iowa City, IA


2007

Hand Held Drinking Vessels, Main Street Gallery, Edwardsville, IL

Recent Works, Robert T. Wright Gallery of Art, Grayslake, IL, Purchase Award and award of merit

History in the Making, Genesee Center for the Arts, Rochester, NY

90 Teapots (More or Less), Xen Gallery, Saint Louis, MO


Featured Artist: Ben Bates, Solo Show, AKAR Gallery, Iowa City, IA


National Juried/Invitational Ceramic Cup Show, Isadore Gallery, Lancaster, PA


7th Annual National Juried Cup Show, Downtown Gallery, Kent, OH


Divine Dirt, The Fine Line Art Center, St. Charles, IL, Award of Excellence


Yunomi Invitational, AKAR Gallery, Iowa City, IA


Members Exhibition, Robert T. Wright Gallery of Art, Grayslake, IL


2006

Recent Works, Robert T. Wright Gallery of Art, Grayslake, IL

2005

Bowled Over, The Clay Studio, Philadelphia, PA

Deer Path Art Festival, Lake Forest, IL


2004

Midwest Clay Exhibition, Midwest Clay Guild, Evanston, IL

Ben Bates at the Deer Path Art Gallery, Lake Forest, IL


2003

30 X 5: Contemporary Ceramics Collection, AKAR Gallery, Iowa City, IA

Deer Path Art Festival, Lake Forest, IL Purchase Award


2002

33.32.02: A Retirement Exhibition of Select MFA Graduates: 1970–2002, New Wagner Gallery, SIUE, Edwardsville, IL (catalogue)

Contemporary Studio Ceramics, Kemper Museum of Contemporary Art, Kansas City, MO


Biennial Ceramics Invitational, Parkland Art Gallery, Champaign, IL (catalogue)


Deer Path Art Festival, Lake Forest, IL


2001

Ben Bates at Deer Path Art Gallery, Lake Forest, IL

Earth and Fire, Lancaster Museum of Art, Lancaster, PA


Deer Path Art Festival, Lake Forest, IL


Artists on the Bluff Exhibition, Lake Bluff, IL


2000

Strictly Functional, Lancaster Museum of Art, Lancaster, PA (catalogue), Award

Deer Path Art Festival, Lake Forest, IL


1999

NCECA Clay National, Columbus Cultural Art Center, Columbus, OH (catalogue)

Departures from the Midwest: KCAI Instructors and Alumni, Baltimore Clayworks, Baltimore, MD


Clay Cup VII, University Museum, SIU Carbondale, IL (poster)


1998

6th Annual Teapot Show, Craft Alliance, St. Louis, MO (poster)

Ben Bates: Recent Works, MFA Show, New Wagner Gallery, Edwardsville, IL


E’ville 12, Moraine Community College, Palos Hills, IL



PUBLIC COLLECTIONS

Perkinson Art Gallery, Decatur, IL

College of Lake County, Grayslake, IL


Ball State University Museum, Muncie, IN


Crab Tree Farm, Lake Bluff, IL


University Museum, SIUE, Edwardsville, IL


Kansas City Art Institute, Kansas City, MO


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