Born in Cleveland, Ohio, 1960, Patricia Sannit received her BA in ceramics, Art History and Norwegian from the University of Minnesota and her MFA from the California College of Arts. She now lives in Phoenix, Arizona. Sannit’s work is influenced by her experiences excavating in the Near East and Ethiopia and her interest in the sciences. Sannit’s most recent public project is a large-scale ceramic installation, Citadel, based on an archeological site in Iraq.
At the moment of the creation of the universe, there was an instant tension between expansion and contraction. Physicist Stephen Hawking expressed this constant tension as, "Our cosmos is bounded, though still infinite." Infinite x = 0 • ∞. Doesn't this statement apply to all experience?
The natural forces that work upon our universe are forces that Patricia Sannit tries to harness and apply to her primary material, clay, and creative process, both in a literal physical sense and in a more philosophical manner. Like all humans, Sannit seems to want to apply order to the natural world, and her work is an expression of the balance between chaos and control, human history and natural forces.
Sannit is interested in our past, as a species, but is equally interested in the future and is motivated to understand our origins. Her work draws from and responds to motifs and patterns, man made and found in nature, and traditions found through history and pre-history that rebound into contemporary art and life. Sannit is excited by how much we have in common, not just with each other or through history or with other species, but with the entirety of the universe.
Clay is the Ur material. It reflects geologic origins, environmental conditions, technological developments and every moment of the artist’s process. What more could she ask?
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