Diane Levinson received her B.A. in Sculpture from State University of New York at Binghamton and her M.F.A. in Ceramics from San Jose State University. She currently teaches ceramics and art history at Bellarmine College Preparatory, San Jose CA. I have been fortunate to have the opportunity to explore the effects of wood-firing clay thanks to Hiroshi Ogawa of Elkton, Oregon and Phil Park and Izzy Lewis of Spring Valley, California. After 30 plus years of exploring the material to have the opportunity to truly paint with the fire has been a gift to which I am most grateful.
“I don’t know what kind of weapons will be used in the third world war, assuming there will be a third world war. But I can tell you what the fourth world war will be fought with — stone clubs.”
Why Clay? Working with clay encompasses all: Process, form, surface, color, plasticity, community, humility, tenacity, joy frustration, angst, beauty, awe inspiring, physical, fantastic. My current work/series began during the George W. Bush years when Weapons of Mass Destruction became shortened to WMDs – a description we heard repeatedly each day in the months leading up to the Iraq War. The play on words was too tempting and the artist began creating her own primitive rough-hewn version of weapons. Only these became her “weapons of mass construction” – lethal, but beautiful. The pieces have morphed into Tools for future generations. A fondness for found objects led her to include metal miscellanea such as pressure gauges, door knobs and key plates, into her sculptures – a practice she continues today.