Around the World with Wouter Dam
Another of our international artists, the Dutch Wouter Dam, will also be included in “Frank’s International House of Ceramics.” Born in Utrecht in 1957, Dam was encouraged to explore form and beauty from a young age. His early interests in the properties of form and volume would go on to dominate his artistic practice.
Dam reveals that in his work, he strives to impart “just a vague memory of the real thing, just a hint. There should be enough room for the viewer to let his own imagination run free.” I am particularly struck by the nautical associations of his work, how they evoke the shadows of great seafaring ships and the cresting movements of the waves themselves. These connotations feel particularly apt when one remembers that the Netherlands rose to international prominence during the Age of Exploration, and traded extensively all over the world. Holland was a nation of ship-building, fishing, and trading for hundreds of years, and these oceanic roots seem to have left their mark in Dam’s work.
Wouter Dam’s finely-wrought ribbons of clay have themselves been the subject of international attention. His work has been shown in the United States, the Netherlands, the United Kingdom, Belgium, France, Germany, Japan and Hong Kong. It seems that his art has now traveled as widely as did the ships of his ancestors!