Form to Function

April 6, 2018 through June 15, 2018

PHILADELPHIA – Wexler Gallery in partnership with the Delaware County Contemporary Art Museum is pleased spotlight two visionary artists Gregory Nangle and Peter Pincus in Form to Function I & II. The exhibition will run from April 6th through June 15th with an opening reception taking place in conjunction with First Friday on April 6th from 5 – 8pm.

This exhibition showcases the industrial, yet elegant, gilded and bronzed work of Gregory Nangle paired with the free-spirited, brightly patterned porcelain vessels of Peter Pincus. Both artists find continual fascination with the challenges presented in their respective media.

Nangle’s work blurs the boundaries between design, sculpture and furniture. Sophisticated design forges the delicate beauty of nature with the weight and strength of industrial materials. Nangle pays homage to the essence of nature’s design schema by fabricating flower or leaf patterns into his pieces. Shape and surface become unified as repetition offers viewers a multi-sensory experience: the sleek surface of glass versus the highly textured surface of bronze and gold leaf. The reflective surface of the glass mirrors its environment, while empty spaces transform into alluring patterns and layers of material.

The physical nature of the work is a study of material process. The artist consistently explores how form or function can alter the viewing experience. By occupying space with the viewer, the artwork either asserts its own significance, or, invites the viewer to question his or her part in validating the relevance of the work.

Peter Pincus’ pioneering work redefines pottery in contemporary practice with a respect for history and a reverence for fresh approaches to craft a ceramic vessel. Years of experimenting and exploring the intersection of color and form led to the development of his technique for his famed vessels. Like a master painter with a canvas, Pincus brushes pigmented slip onto the clay vessels, but the similarities stop there. Each labor-intensive step involves hours of preparation, tools, templates, molds, pigments, sanding, glazing, firing, and finishing, all with a surgically precise technique to create his “three-dimensional ceramic paintings.”

Like Nangle, Pincus’ format, whether large-scale or small, reinforces a relationship between the viewer and the object; its sheer materiality and complexity insists the viewer circumnavigate the space of the gallery to absorb the magnitude of the form, function, and design. The physical space in the exhibition and the inherent movement of the viewer become as powerful as the artwork on display.

Gregory Nangle studied glass at Tyler School of Art, Philadelphia, and metals at the University of Hartford Art School. He is the owner of Outcast Studios, an art foundry and gallery. The 10,000 square foot space attracts clients such as the National Constitution Center, the New York City Vietnam Veterans Memorial, Matthew Barney, Frank Lloyd Wright, and H.R. Geiger (set design in the film,Alien). His work is in the collections of the Glass Musee Ebeltoft, Denmark, Wheaton Museum of American Glass, NJ, and private collections.

Pincus received his BFA and MFA in ceramics from Alfred University. Since graduate school, Pincus worked as studio manager at the Genesee Center for Arts and Education, Rochester, NY, adjunct professor at Roberts Wesleyan College, Rochester, NY, and currently as Visiting Assistant Professor in Ceramics at the School for American Crafts, Rochester, NY. He maintains a studio in Penfield, NY. His colored porcelain work has been exhibited in venues such as the Museum of Contemporary Craft, John Michael Kohler Arts Center, Sand Angelo Museum of Fine Arts, Icheon World Ceramics Center, AKAR Gallery, TRAX Gallery, Plinth Gallery, the Art of the Pot studio tour, the American Pottery Festival, Greenwich House Potter, and the National Council on Education for the Ceramic Arts. A recipient of the NICHE award for slip cast ceramics and a Tiffany Grant. Pincus’ work is in numerous private and public collections.

Challenging the traditional labels that categorize art, Wexler Gallery exhibits work that coexists in the expressive realms of design, fine art and contemporary glass and ceramics. Questioning and testing the boundaries of these fields, Wexler Gallery aims to present functional and non-functional work that consistently celebrates innovation as much as aesthetic beauty.