Artist: Andrea Lauren Williams
Media: ceramics, raw clay, cement, mason stain
Gallery: CSULB School of Art, Gatov Gallery West
About the Artist:
Andrea Williams is am undergraduate student at CSULB in the Ceramics program. She was born and raised in Riverside and is currently commuting from there. Andrea stated that art and music have both been an important aspect of her family since she was a child. She was in a band and has played the drums since she was 12. When she was in her 20’s, her husband encouraged her to choose something in art so she chose ceramics. Her biggest interest is being a mother and a pet owner of many animals like dogs and chickens. Overall Andrea really loves music and art, along with her family. She describes that her work is titled “Sacrifice” because her pieces explore the ideas of sacrifice that become apparent during stages like motherhood. It also encompasses the sacrifice of a woman- like her body, her time, and other aspects that tend to go unnoticed.
Andrea’s work is mainly created with cement and ceramics. Her pieces have rough surfaces with clean lines painted on them. The colors are very dull and neutral which make the pieces seem very natural. The cement used is gray but certain points in her work are outlined with the color brown to highlight specific aspects in each piece. The artist stated that The texture on the pieces also look very rough and rugged. The overall theme of the work is that is seems very natural but also rough around the edges.
Andrea’s exhibition mainly focuses on the idea of sacrifice which normally comes along with vital stages in life like finding faith and becoming a mother. Her concept of sacrifice is both physical and mental. After a woman gives birth, her body permanently changes along with her way of living. When a child is born, the woman must forfeit her physical body along with aspects like sleep, free time, and her social life. In addition to motherhood, sacrifice can be clearly seen in religion and faith. Physical sacrifice is apparent in her pieces illustrating pain and agony below the cross. Her purpose of naming her exhibition “Sacrifice” was so she could pay respect to things given up that often go unnoticed. She specifies that her work is particularly religious and has to do with Christianity and Jesus Christ. The different pieces give off a feeling of gloom and sadness that create an overall appreciation for the idea of sacrifice.
I really enjoy Andrea’s work because despite the fact I am not a mother, I can relate to her exhibition on the level of religion. I am also Christian and fully believe that Jesus Christ died on the cross for our sins- which was the ultimate sacrifice. I really enjoyed seeing religious ideas recreated as contemporary artwork because I have a very deep appreciation for it as it is extremely difficult to do. I love that Andrea made her work personal by relating religious sacrifice to the sacrifices of motherhood. Since the artist is a mother herself, she was able to fully express her own thoughts and feelings in her pieces. The art informs people how hard it can be to be faithful and to also be a mother, and I really like that she centered her focus around these aspects. The pieces were not only beautifully created, but also told an incredible story.