Kate Doody
BIOGRAPHY
b. 1978

Kate Doody is an American artist who creates large-scale installations, sculptures and works on paper. The themes in Kate’s work are fueled by an interest in the human sensorial condition through the lens of material translations. Over the course of the last ten years, Kate has expanded her material repertoire to incorporate fiber, photography, wood, foil and plaster constructions informed by her foundational work with ceramic materials and process.

Her exhibition record spans the United States with shows at such locations as The Northern Clay Center in Minnesota, Clemson University in North Carolina, Wexler Gallery in Philadelphia, and SOFA Chicago. Her work is part of the permanent museum collection of the Burchfield Penney Art Center in Buffalo, NY, as well as the international collection of the San Bao Ceramic Institute of Jingdezhen, in China. Among her awards Kate received the notable Trustee Full Scholarship from The School of the Art Institute of Chicago where she received her Master of Fine Arts degree in 2008. She received her Bachelor of Fine Arts from the New York State College of Ceramics at Alfred University in 2001.


Kate actively engages in critical inquiry as part of both her studio and teaching practices. She has been a full-time Faculty in the Ceramics Department at the Maryland Institute College of Art as well as the State University of New York at New Paltz. She has been a visiting artist, resident artist and teacher at numerous arts institutions across the country.

Kate currently lives and works in Eastham, MA.





ARTIST STATEMENT

While probing the stretch between materiality and process, I extrapolate pieces of my own identity to develop meaning in my work. I structure objects and spaces that are inspired by the body’s susceptibility to manipulation through its visual and proprioceptional potentials and limitations.

My making process is often intuitively driven. Though the work has an emotional gravity, it is heavily influenced by a pragmatic dissection of man-made systems designed to help us navigate our world like math, music and language. By playing with the logic of these structures, I invent new ones in my own minds eye, bringing them to fruition with crisp craftsmanship. I always consider the emotive allusions in my aesthetic decisions and hope to ground these explorations in a seductive physical format that complements their intellectual premise.

Corporeal moments and architectonic structures are the spine of my haptic language. Illusion is a primary strategy that I employ to both challenge perceptive revelations, and to shift spatial and sensorial relationships. The space between the intellect and the sensorium, order and chaos, the body and its surroundings, are like fluid fields that ripple in and out of each other. The experiments I produce while traversing these playgrounds are a way for me to explore homo faber (“man the maker”).





TEACHING STATEMENT


“Questioning is no longer merely a step that is surmounted on the way to the answer and thus to knowing, rather, questioning itself becomes the highest form of knowing.”
Martin Heidegger



My goal as a teacher is to create an environment where students are active participants in the educational process. Concurrently, I continually advocate for their success and work to galvanize their efforts to achieve their greatest potentials. In my classroom, students are a part of a community of learners (myself included) that question, take risks, share, and grow.

It is my role to provide stability and guidance and I find it necessary to assert clear expectations, and goals to my students. By adhering to and expecting fair conduct, I aim to establish a healthy atmosphere that encourages a strong work ethic among my students. I take seriously my relationship with each student and work to develop mutual trust and respect. I help them discover their strengths, and we collaboratively find ways to build on their unique potentials.

Play As Learning
Heidegger’s statement is essential to how I approach life as well as teaching. Play, as a form of questioning, allows us to generate alternative solutions, to re-examine our realities, and to provoke change. I believe play is a fundamental ingredient in artistic production. In projects where I emphasize process and exploration over product, students are encouraged to take risks. I challenge students not to rely on the safety of previously successful strategies, and to push beyond what they feel comfortable with. I believe that this creative play fosters the development of their problem solving skills, provides them with a broadened perspective, and often times, results in the most innovative and creative solutions. I always encourage students to keep their minds open to new possibilities.

Skill Development
Three main skill sets are to be employed in the classroom: the negotiation of technical knowledge, critical discourse, and the contextualization of their work in relation to the art world at large.

Technique
It is important for me to regularly and competently demonstrate techniques, and to discuss options for their application. I encourage my students to develop fundamental problem solving and technical skills, and to discern the purpose and effect that a particular skill set may afford them. With thoughtful consideration, this foundation of knowledge will help them strategize as they develop their individualized artistic practice.

Critical Discourse
Observation, analysis, and verbal expression are practiced during formal critiques as well as intermittently throughout the making process with individual meetings and the continual dialogue between classmates across studio tables. I promote that students be mutual partners in the exchange of discourse. This sharing helps them put their thoughts into words as well as opens them up to new ideas. I feel it is important to encourage students to negotiate a balance between inside and outside voices, and for them to be aware of how their intentions are being received by others.

Contextualization
I believe it is imperative that students address the fact that making artwork is a form of communication, with a long and self-referential history. Reinforcing students to research thus becomes an important facet of teaching and I encourage students to investigate and contribute to a contemporary dialogue. Concurrently, I provide as diverse a spectrum of references as possible to inspire them and to catapult their research. Framing the work with relevant art theory and history, as well as contemporary issues in philosophy and politics, can not only inspire, but can help the students advance their understanding of how their work fits into the world, and provides them the context with which they can bolster their ideas.

Building Community
Diversity is a valuable asset and I work hard to avoid a homogeneous classroom culture. Each student brings a unique perspective to the classroom and I encourage the recognition and sharing of each of their thoughts, reactions, and creations with one another so as to enhance the learning process for everyone. Each student’s strengths are different and I promote that they learn and act collaboratively as these practices are essential to success in any field. It is my intention that the classroom becomes a location for the application of larger issues of community development and action.

I feel that higher education in the arts is about learning to observe, absorb, adapt, react and question the world we live in. It is a constant process that we engage in throughout our lives, as our minds are constantly being shaped and shifted with each new experience. I work with students to help them become more equipped to synergize their greatest potentials with our constantly changing world.