Penny Truitt: “Intended Consequences”

Santa Fe, NM– Chiaroscuro is pleased to present, Intended Consequences, the latest body of work by Santa Fe based sculptor Penny Truitt, on view from July 3 – August 1, 2020. The artist’s reception is, Saturday, July 4, 1-5 pm, observing COVID-safe practices including, social distancing and masks required for entry into the gallery.

Intended Consequences consists of a new body of sculpture which sets three-dimensional ideas into motion employing two forms in each piece, one of clay, the other steel. While thinking about the cardinal points of North, South, East and West, Truitt makes hand-built clay forms as a representation of the landscape, which is disrupted by steel forms  breaking through the clay. The analogy implies steel as a man-made interruption or barrier imposed on the clay. She explains. “Building a barrier wall has both political and environmental consequences that remain long after the wall disintegrates.” While she doesn’t intend for the artwork to appear political in nature, she is thinking about these analogies within her forms.

A ceramic sculptor for the majority of her career, Truitt started working in steel five years ago to challenge herself with a new material and methods. The distinct properties of clay and steel inspire Truitt to take full advantage of their inherent qualities. Truitt thinks of fired clay forms as permanent, and the steel elements in a constant state of decay and change, through rust and oxidation. After mastering the ancient technique of Raku firing, Truitt’s ceramic forms come together with elaborate surface texture, beautifully modeled color glazes and strong architectural formal elements. In this body of work, the fired clay functions as a place of departure and the steel elements are added to it, setting up the visual tension-and-release within the sculpture. For Truitt, this dance between material and form is what brings each piece to life.

Penny Truitt has enjoyed a long career as a self-taught artist. Graduating from Boston University with a BA in Classical Archaeology, her studies have informed her world view and artistic endeavors. Truitt is an active member of Potters for Peace, a US-based, non-profit, social justice organization that works in two clay-related fields: working with subsistence potters in Nicaragua, and working throughout the world to assist with the establishment of factories that produce ceramic water filters. Since 2002, Truitt has traveled to Nicaragua annually to help support rural community cooperatives, joining others to build kilns, studio spaces and repairing damaged structures. Organizing sales in Santa Fe provides income for the potters in these isolated communities as well. This is Truitt’s third solo exhibition at Chiaroscuro.

Penny Truitt: Intended Consequences      

July 3 – August 1, 2020 Artist’s Reception: Saturday, July 4, 1-5 pm

Chiaroscuro Contemporary Art 558 Canyon Road Santa Fe NM 87501, 505-992-0711