Since graduating in 2011, Adam Ledford (BFA Ceramics) has taken part in a series of exhibitions. His latest solo show, Gotta Catch ’em appears in Rittenhouse Square this month.
“The show title refers to the act of obsessively collecting of infinite intangibles, like learning dinosaur names or constellations. We are trained as children to collect objects that serve as substitutes or mementos of experiences or objects, things like basebal cards, matchbox cars, or Hard Rock Cafe T-shirts. For me these activities were more about collecting and knowing the information about different categories of things rather than getting all the trading cards or filling up the coin collection folders,” Ledford said.
The exhibition features a full room version of his previous work entitled Garniture Wall, an arrangement of various pots that Ledford made from memory of specific pots found throughout history.
“The inspiration for this show, Gotta Catch ’em comes from my research into historical ceramics and other domestic objects. I received a Windgate Fellowship in 2011 and was able to travel all along the East Coast and Pacific Northwest of the US, as well as to London and Dubai to study ceramics. In this research I met with curators in a number of museums to look at their institution’s collection in storage to see up close and often handle, feel and smell the pots,” Ledford said.
Testing his recollection of pots that he had seen led to the creation of Gotta Catch ’em.
“At one point during this research I began to questions how much I had learned, truly internalized and knew, the objects I was seeking out. I also wanted to decorate my house in the space between the exposed studs of the walls. So, I began making half pots, with a flat back instead of fully realized in the round, so they would fit on the wall between 2 x 4’s,” Ledford said.
Ledford began with his process by simply trying to remember specific pots and drawing in the clay.
“They are all filtered through my remembrances. They are a physical record of my memory, and for this exhibition I have filled the walls of the gallery with these pots creating my literal mental library,” Ledford said.
Gotta Catch ’em will open October 5 at the Metropolitan Gallery from 5 p.m. until 9 p.m. There will then be another reception on November 2. Ledford’s exhibit will be the first to debut at the new gallery, opening the same day. The intention of the gallery is to showcase young, emerging artists. The exhibit will run until November 18.