Robin Reichelt, aka R-tista Loca
The true story of an Art
History major gone bad…
In the beginning,
I had good intentions and clear goals.
I had my sights set on the doctoral
program at Penn State, specializing
in medieval art and architecture. Then
something happened; I took a ceramics
course. More than fun, it became an
obsession, with no chance for rehabilitation.
All thoughts of a PhD abandoned, I
found myself with an MFA from Tyler
School of Art.
I stray? What is so seductive about
clay? For me, it is the physicality
and immediacy, the inherent contradiction
of working with clay in its different
forms. Wet clay is extremely impressionable,
malleable. It will assume almost any
shape and can reveal your desires.
Only during the firing process does
clay develop a will of its own, a will
to which all clay artists must bow.
The heat of the kiln takes our passion,
our ideas, our vision, and reshapes
it all. Sometimes the result raises
us to a new level of creativity, and
other times it’s a catapult into
the abyss. I am in awe of this process
whether the end result is a humble
piece of tableware or a reference to
man’s first building material.
Both are civilizing. Each time I come
back to the studio I experience a sense
of wonder & renewal. Each piece
of clay is a new beginning. Each firing
is a tempering. Each trip through this
cycle brings contentment - at least,
Work by R-tista
Loca has been exhibited
in the Memorial Art Gallery, Rochester,
NY; the Carborundum Crafts Museum,
Niagara Falls, NY; NCECA Conference,
Philadelphia, PA; Xerox Center,
Rochester, NY; Campbell Museum,
Camden, NJ. Permanent Collections:
State University of New York at
Brockport; Bill Stewart collection.