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Art exhibit highlights faculty ceramics and sculpture

Published on November 21, 2022

Art exhibit highlights faculty ceramics and sculpture

Sculptures by Allison Elia

Wooden sculptures by Robert Greene

Ceramics by Daniela de Sousa

Three dramatically different artistic interpretations of the human experience and how we rebound from setbacks are expressed in the faculty Sculpture and Ceramic Exhibit on view in the Art Gallery at Eastern Connecticut State University through Dec. 16.

Robert L. Greene ‘06, professor of sculpture in art and art history, calls his work “a visual autobiography in a sense.” He works with wood and found objects, creating abstract sculptures that express the struggles and experiences that he believes many share.

“I’m allowing others, especially our students, to realize that their professors are just human. We have walls and we all have scars,” he said. He hopes that his work conveys, “I’ve been there, I understand what you’re going through.”

Allison Elia’s clay sculptures, mostly large-scale female forms in sometimes contorted posts inspired by gymnastics and floating, explore what she calls “the coexistence of guilt/weight and hope/buoyancy within a person.”

“I’ve experienced enough unforeseen circumstances in my life to recognize the value of changing my perspective and moving onward even when it seems like the ground fell out from underneath me,” said Elia, adjunct professor of ceramics.

The third exhibitor, adjunct ceramics instructor Daniela de Sousa ‘06, is showing a series of heart-themed works that she began in 2017 after separating from her long-time partner. They range from anatomical depictions of a heart to glazed pots with faces erupting from the interior.

Her work explores universal experiences and “conditions in which we find ourselves … such as love, loss, geo-socio-economic-political circumstances … parenting teenagers … all of which transform the perceptions of ourselves and the world around us,” she said.

Daniela de Sousa

Allison Elia

Robert Greene

Greene earned master’s and MFA degrees from the University of Massachusetts, Dartmouth, after graduating from Eastern in 2006. His sculptures have been exhibited along the East Coast and New York City.

Elia, whose studio is in Rhode Island, has moved through 10 apartments and studios in six years in her journey from the University of Akron, where she graduated in painting/drawing and ceramics in 2009. She earned her MFA in ceramics from the University of Massachusetts, Dartmouth, and completed a two-year artist residency at Art Center West in Roswell, GA, in 2016. She has exhibited at galleries and museums in the U.S. and internationally.

De Sousa, who emigrated from Brazil in 1999, earned a bachelor’s degree with a concentration in visual art/sculpture from Eastern and a master’s degree in arts education from the University of Florida. She teaches art full time at Windham High School and founded Spiral Arts Studio in Willimantic.

The gallery, located in the Fine Arts Instructional Center, is free and open to the public Monday and Wednesday from noon to 4 p.m., Tuesday, Thursday and Friday from noon to 7 p.m., and Saturday from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m.

Written by Lucinda Weiss