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Virginia Eckinger grew up in Birmingham, Alabama and attended Washington University in Saint Louis, where she received her BFA in Sculpture in 2011. She returned South to get her Masters Degree at The University of Alabama, where she completed her MFA in 2014. She currently resides in Northport, Alabama, where she splits her time between teaching at The University of Alabama, and running an experimental arts-space, gallery and event space with fellow artists Anne Herbert and Claire Lewis Evans.
My process begins with a bodily sensation. Whether it is the impression of being squeezed too tightly, pressed in a corner, or heated by embarrassment, I channel these perceptions by compacting them into clay form, modeling and refining until the object embodies the original sensation. Rather than direct translations, these objects are fictive elaborations; they are a respite from the literal, an intangible reinterpretation of reality.
Slump, crack, split, explode, stretch, shrink, bloat, compress. The human body and clay share many similar physicalities. The surface treatments become the skin, coating and containing the delicate ceramic object within. The modes of display become their sparse environments, the interaction between the two creating a dialogue between self and support.