Jan 14th 2023

Dove Drury Hornbuckle: What Cannot Be Said Will Be Wept

@ Goldfinch

319 N Albany Ave, Chicago, IL 60612

Opening Saturday, January 14th, from 3PM - 6PM

On view through Saturday, February 25th

In Gallery I, Goldfinch is pleased to present “What Cannot Be Said Will Be Wept,” a solo exhibition of new ceramic works by Dove Drury Hornbuckle. The exhibition is on view from Saturday, January 14th through Saturday, February 25th.


Evocative of natural formations like caves, mounds, burrows, and mountains, as well as architectural constructions like temples or towers, Hornbuckle’s new sculptures expand the artist’s somatic explorations of multiplicity, ritual, and selfhood. Through rhythmic mark-making, Hornbuckle’s hand-built forms demonstrate both the malleability and freedom of clay, along with the realities of its limitations and its relationships with chance, chemistry, and the elements—factors which Hornbuckle embraces rather than avoids, absorbing “faults” into the integrity of the pieces themselves.


Following a residency in Reykjavík, Iceland, in 2022, Hornbuckle’s work and practice reveled in the lore, mythologies, and anecdotal accounts of the otherworldly realm of faeries (“fae” or “Fey”) or “hidden people,” which are widely accepted among Icelandic people. Common Icelandic lore and tales involving these “hidden people” describe their alignment with the natural landscape of the country, as “eco-protectors” who defend unbuilt landscape and resist or undo development projects. For Hornbuckle, the spirit of “fae folk” serves as a touchstone for anti-conformist ideals around pleasure, being, gender, spirituality, and ritual. Considering, in Hornbuckle’s words, “what it means to be a faerie,” the artist’s practice and new body of work largely considers the “freedom of self-possession and agency, freedom of movement, and the ability to change without fear.”


In the exhibition, wall-based mosaics and small ceramic works depicting sprite-like figures evoke mystical totemic forms, charms, or early pagan alphabets. Similarly, a large-scale circular mosaic, comprised of a multitude of small glazed vessels, nods to discrete places in the landscape where minute creatures like insects, birds or even “hidden people,” might make their homes, such as small pools of water, tiny burrows in the ground, folds between the petals of a flower, or even decorative garden ornaments like bird baths and bug houses. This gentle nod to dwelling places or shelters for non-human creatures speaks more broadly to Hornbuckle’s interest in reframing dichotomies between utility and decoration, while considering the ways objects can take on functions that weren’t anticipated, often in organic, and even symbiotic, ways.


While their vessels engage the ancient lineage of clay objects back to prehistoric artifacts, Hornbuckle’s thick, layered use of glaze also acts as an uninhibited ornamentation of the forms—reminiscent of fashion or lavish costuming. Glazes might pool or over-drip, subject to temperature distribution in the kiln, and these moments of combination, overlap of color, and mottled surface quality serve, for Hornbuckle, as the mysterious and sensual pleasures of the medium. As a framework for considering non-dominant, expansive modes of celebration, kinship, adornment, and function, Hornbuckle’s evocation of “fae folk” acts as a joyful embrace of irregularity, texture, natural landscapes, and the elements, while acting as a subtle rebuff of sterile production and consumerism.


Artist’s Bio:

Dove Drury Hornbuckle is an interdisciplinary artist whose practice derives from the belief that art making is a somatic ritual to witness and investigate the multiplicities of the Self. They received their MFA in ceramics from the Rhode Island School of Design in 2018; following their degree they were a 2018 fellow at the Ox-Bow School of Art and Artists’ Residency, where they currently serve as the Ceramics Studio Manager. Hornbuckle has exhibited their artwork nationally and internationally over the past decade; they were awarded a 2020 teaching fellowship at Vermont Studio Center and in April 2020 they exhibited in a two person show at Roots & Culture in Chicago, IL with artist Dæ Ja. Hornbuckle is currently located between Saugatuck, MI and Chicago, IL.

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