I create functional vessels with active surfaces that are achieved through layering clay, glazes, and over-glazes. Through atmospheric firing processes, these materials mature and bond with the vessels to bring depth and balance. Edges are highlighted, form is enhanced, microcrystals grow, and materials blend. It is through layers of surface that compliment the form that I encourage touch, interaction, and use of my wares.
My pottery surface influences come from objects that remain through seasons and weathering. These objects can be man-made or natural: brick buildings that reveal layers of painted advertisements from the middle of the century, ridges of land and stone that meet the ocean day-after-day, or a barn placed on the horizon along the highway. The physical surfaces change and record each season, as years blend into decades, the colors, forms, and edges erode but remain. My mind is lured into these surfaces and I look closer to find what other details an object will reveal. I strive for my wares to entice the user towards contemplation and curiosity.
My forms begin with ideas of volume and structure. I envision my pots to be standing tall, ready to be admired, filled, and used. Often, I will add marks to my pieces that push the forms in and soften a curve while maintaining the structure of the piece. This invites gesture to the form and will encourage atmospheric highlights from a wood, soda, or salt glaze firing.
I create objects because of connections within the process. I seek out my own answers to form and surface through explorations in materials and firings that forge a path of expression, accomplishment, and understanding. I join other artists as they seek answers and reference wares from historic potters whose objects remain. My connection with clay comes full circle when I interact, educate, and inform a customer who then finds inherent value in my wares.
Chris Singewald was born in Waverly, Iowa. He received a Bachelor of Fine Arts Degree in Studio Ceramics from the University of Northern Iowa in 2006. After graduating, he became an apprentice for an internationally renowned ceramic artist Chris Gustin in South Dartmouth, MA. Chris also received a Post-Baccalaureate Certificate from the University of Massachusetts-Dartmouth in 2010.
From 2011–2013, Singewald was a Resident Artist and Materials/Glaze Technician at Northern Clay Center in Minneapolis, MN, as well as the Outreach and Studio Technician. He was the Outreach Manager at Northern Clay Center from April 2013 to January 2017; the outreach program which he managed reached 12,000-14,000 individuals annually. In March 2019, Chris curated Variations of Shino, an exhibition featuring 20 regional potters utilizing Shino glaze during the National Council on Education for the Ceramics Education (NCECA) conference in Minneapolis. He was awarded the 2019 Fogelberg Studio Fellowship at Northern Clay Center. Chris traveled to Haystack Mountain School of Craft in June of 2019 to serve as the Ceramics Technician during a two-week Open Studio Residency program.
Currently, Singewald is the Clay Studio Manager at Artistry, a theatre and visual arts non-profit organization in Bloomington, MN, and maintains a home studio in Minneapolis, MN. Chris teaches classes throughout the Twin Cities for Northern Clay Center and Artistry. He has extensive experience leading clay workshops with children and adults, and he is passionate about bringing positive clay experiences to students.