Artist Statement

Brianne Shea


       My work has more of an old-world sort of aesthetic to it, referencing a pre-industrialization era because I have a fascination and appreciation for the effort and skill it took to do anything by hand.  There was a certain attention to detail that got lost in the frenzy of the Industrial Revolution because objects had to be produced en masse.  There was no time to hand carve or paint intricate designs on each and every piece, they had to be churned out as efficiently as possible.  As objects lost those details people lost any sense of interest and connection to the objects being used.  My work is about bringing back that kind of attention, because functional does not have to be synonymous with boring, utilitarian, and convenient.  I like to use vibrant jewel tones to catch the eye, and flowing patterns to keep it moving around an object.  I make work that is meant to be handled every day, so that the user can experience a moment, no matter how brief or simple, with some sort of emotion rather than as an automated process.

            I want someone to make an active choice about the object they are going to go home and use, instead of just grabbing whatever is easiest to reach on the box store shelf.  So many things about daily life and the things that go into it are just taken for granted, and happen in a very passive way, which is a shame.  I am the type of person who loves to cook from scratch, and I am working in a restaurant where my entire job is about making different pastas by hand since we prefer to avoid boxed brands.  I still write snail mail, in cursive, and with a fountain pen because I enjoy the tactility of putting pen to paper.  I could easily just go out and buy pasta, and sauce in a jar, any kind I want, or send an email through facebook.  Ordering a pizza online and having it delivered to my door late at night is a wonderful option to have, but I don't want my entire life to be nothing beyond that.  Handmade objects have a much stronger presence and sense of personality about them because they are a testament to the fact that someone actually cared about something enough to take the time and effort to do it themselves in spite of the easy availability of an object in the store.