Not just an April’s fool today: the art of ceramics comes back as you never have seen before. Wanna bet? Let’s read together about “Pansy Ass Ceramics”, by Kris Aaron and Andrew Walker.
How did you two meet?
We met in Montreal, Andy was Living there and Kris was living in Toronto. A mutual friend introduced us one night while Kris was in the City on vacation.
When did this project begin?
We Started Pany Ass in the Summer of 2015. Andy had Moved to Toronto and we started it as a creative project we could do together.
Before working with porcelain, have you try experimenting with other materials?
Yes, Kris studied Fine Art and mostly did painting, drawing and illustration work. Illustration has always been a part of what we do and we are currently starting explore more ways we can bring drawing into Pansy Ass.
Is there a specific choice in the color palette of your work?
We have always been drawn to pastel tones, that colour palette really sofetens the subject matter of the work in a fun way. We bring in some more saturated colours occasionally but our mainstay is definitely pastel.
How does it work to promote such an “analogic”, handmade art during a digital time we’re living?
Our work and Ceramics in general have a really strong tie to the decorative arts and domestic life. Thinking about contemporary domestic queer space is really fun for us, and I think there is still an appreciation for handmade art. The idea of working with 3d printing has crossed our minds, and it would definitely be easier that how we currently work, but it would detach the intimacy we have with each piece and those who collect our work.
In the Statement on your site you declare your will to explore male gay identity and through porcelain, that is the perfect medium for its fragility and elegance. What I literally adore is this contrast between kinky themes and prestige of the medium, because it feels like a more complete narration of sexuality, that actually can be both. How do you choose subjects and contexts to depict?
Thank you, we definitely like to start with subjects that turn us on and we like to combine these things with bits of art history, working with Camp aesthetic as well as European porcelain tradition like Rococo extravagance.
Porcelain and ceramics are traditional home decoration. The intuition to turn them into erotica free sexuality from taboos and put it in daily common spotlight, which is awesome. How do people usually react?
It is definitely a mixed reaction, I would say most younger Urban people appreciate it, but there are some conservative views of sex still that people get offended by seeing representations of it in the open. There is also a lingering fear of the male body that goes around . . . we have been approached at shows by several straight, cis women that tell us how refreshing it is so see male bodies be displayed and objectified as objects of desire.
This is a very recurring question I do because is something that always link erotic artists together: community guidelines. Have you ever been in trouble on social media? How does your job go on those cases?
We do, we have been very lucky on Instagram because they have a clause in their community guidelines that sculpture is okay. I also think that because our work is not photo-real we pass a little more… We did make the decision, however, a few years ago to have our page private. We found that when photos are removed it is less of instagram’s enforcing the rules than it is users targeting certain groups and reporting them. We were advised in the beginning not to use hashtags with anything gay related because there are people that follow these to target them and have them removed.
I’ve seen you’re featuring the Museum of Sex in New York! Tell us about this experience.
Working with the Museum of Sex is really great! They have been a big support to us and it is such a great way to have the work before a huge audience that may not come across us online.
There are any future project you’re working on?
We were in the works for two big solo shows, one in Los Angeles and one here in Toronto, but then the Pandemic hit and everything has been put on hold. . . we are very fortunate that our studio is fairly isolated and we are going to take the opportunity to explore fun new things that we have been thinking of but haven’t had the time to realize until now.