MSAC Individual Artist Award (IAA)Prior to 2012
Artist StatementAni Kasten has been working in the ceramic medium since 2000, beginning with an apprenticeship with British ceramist Rupert Spira. After a year in England, Ani traveled to Kathmandu, Nepal where she spent four years as head of a project for developing stoneware technology for a community of artisan potters in the village of Thimi. Her training in England and the exotic working environment in Nepal have infused Ani’s sculptural vessels with a combined aesthetic, drawing on minimalist British studio ceramics, as well as ancient, weathered, hand-made objects born from traditional cultures throughout Asia. After leaving Nepal, Ani began working in Oakland, California where the fresh natural beauty of the California coastline juxtaposed with extreme urban deterioration began to inform the language of her work. From 2007 through 2009, Ani was an Artist in Residence at Red Dirt Studio in Mt. Rainier, MD, where she worked closely with ceramic artist Margaret Boozer, and further developed her distinct combination of sculpture and vessel work, showing her ceramics nationally at galleries and craft shows. Ani has now established her permanent workspace at Gateway Art Center in Brentwood MD.
Selected Exhibitions 2011 Lacoste Gallery, Solo Exhibition, Concord, MA (November) Vessel Gallery, Solo Exhibition, Oakland, CA (March) 2010 Washington Craft Show Washington, D.C. (November) Philadelphia Museum Craft Show, Philadelphia PA (November) Lacoste Gallery, SOFA Santa Fe, Santa Fe, NM (July) Lacoste Gallery, SOFA Chicago, Chicago, IL (October) Gallery 555, Group Exhibition, Washington D.C. The Smithsonian Craft Show, Washington, D.C. Lacoste Gallery Solo at SOFA, New York, NY Lacoste Gallery, Solo Exhibition, Concord, MA Wood Turning Center, Magical Realism/ Material Illusions, Phildelphia, PA 2009 Philadelphia Museum of Art Craft Show, Philadelphia, PA Lacoste Gallery, SOFA Chicago, Chicago, IL Baltimore Clayworks, More than Skin Deep, Group Exhibition, Baltimore, MD Kobo At Higo, Exhibition with Lilith Rockett, Seattle, WA Gallery Up, Tea Bowl Invitational, Rock Hill, SC The Smithsonian Craft Show, Washington, D.C. Lacoste Gallery, SOFA New York, New York, NY The Katzen Center at American University Museum, Tabletop Sculpture, Washington, D.C. American Craft Council Baltimore Show, Baltimore, MD 2008 Vessel, Imprint, Berkeley, CA Diane Birdsall Gallery, Winter Landscape, Solo Exhibition, Old Lyme, CT Project 4 Gallery and Hickok Cole Architects, Art Night, Washington, D.C. Lacoste Gallery, Vessel and Sculpture, Concord, MA Kobo At Higo, Solo Exhibition, Seattle, WA Coincide: Contemporary Ceramic Sculpture @Artomatic, Washington, D.C. Project 4 Gallery at the Herman Miller National Design Center, Art + Space, Washington, D.C., Project 4 Gallery, 2, Washington, D.C. Red Dirt Studio at NCECA, The Myth of Permanence, Pittsburgh, PA 2007 Project 4 Gallery and the Jenco Group, Abode: Where Art and Design Meet, Washington, D.C. Red Dirt Studio, New Territories, Solo Exhibition, Mt. Rainier, MD SKH Gallery, New Work, Solo Exhibition, Great Barrington, MA Cross MacKenzie Ceramic Arts, Bowled Over, Washington, D.C. Education 2002 Ceramics Apprenticeship with Santa Kumar Prajapati, Master Potter, Thimi Ceramics, Thimi, NEPAL 2001 Ceramics Apprenticeship with Rupert Spira, Master Potter, Church Farm Pottery, Shropshire, ENGLAND 2000 B.A., University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, MI Grant Awards and Residencies 2010 Smithsonian Craft Show, Washington D.C., Exhibitor’s Choice Award 2009 Philadelphia Museum of Art Craft Show, Best in Contemporary Clay Smithsonian Craft Show, Washington D.C., Exhibitor’s Choice Award American Craft Council Show, Baltimore, Award of Excellence in Ceramics Maryland State Arts Council Individual Artist Grant 2007–2009 Artist-in-Residence, Red Dirt Studio, Mt. Rainier, MD 2004–2006 Ramsay Merriam Grant* 2002–2006 Ramsay Merriam Grant for the Preservation of Indigenous Craft Traditions, Ramsay Merriam Fund, Washington, D.C.* * I was awarded a grant from the Ramsay Merriam Fund for the purpose of introducing stoneware technology to Nepalese potters. My Nepalese colleagues and I set up the first stoneware facility in the country in the village of Thimi and formulated new high-fire clay and glazes using local materials. I also created a range of tableware designs for the Thimi potters to produce for the export market. Due to the success of the project, the Ramsay Merriam Fund decided to award an additional grant for continuing my work in Nepal. With the second grant, we established a training facility where more potters from the village can have the opportunity to learn about the new methods and techniques for ceramics production. We have also designed an online resource for people worldwide to learn about the ceramic making traditions and culture of Nepal. Selected Press 2009 Home Fort Lauderdale, ‘The Maximalist and the Minimalist”, September 2009 Home and Design, ‘An Artist’s Enclave’, May/June 2009 Metropolitan Home, ‘A Fresh Start’, January 2009 2008 Ceramic Review, ‘New Territories’, May/June 2008 2007 House and Garden, U.K., ‘People– Lifestyle’, October 2007 Architectural Digest, ‘Designer’s Own Homes: Suzanne Lovell’, September 2007 Shelter, ‘Connoisseur’s Delight’, May¬–June 2007 2005 Architectural Digest, ‘The Craftsman’s Eye’, November 2005 Martha Stewart Living, ‘A Well-Crafted Gathering’, September 2005