Universal and Sublime, Magdalene Odundo’s Vessels

Universal and Sublime: The Vessels of Magdalene Odundo

Universal and Sublime: The Vessels of Magdalene Odundo, an exhibition of terracotta vessels and related work by British-based, Kenyan Magdalene Odundo, is currently running at the High Museum of Art is. The exhibition traces the trajectory of Odundo’s work over the course of three decades, from its genesis in the early 1980s through her most recent innovations, including new work created especially for the exhibition.

Over the years, Odundo’s art has become immediately recognizable for its distinctive, sensuous forms. Her ceramics synthesize artistic traditions ranging from Greek and Roman pottery to Elizabethan costumes, to the art of modern masters Henri Matisse and Amedeo Modigliani, to the spherical vessels African women have made throughout the centuries to carry and store water.

Odundo builds her vessels by hand and often fires them repeatedly, which results in burnished surfaces ranging from bright, bold orange to smoky, iridescent black. The exhibition presents the artist’s ceramics alongside some of her work on paper, including sketchbooks she made while visiting the High Museum of Art in 1991 and 2011.

The exhibition runs until October 15, 2017.


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