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Object Permanence

  • Ox-Bow, 3435 Rupprecht Way Saugatuck, MI 49453 USA (map)

CER 641 001, 2 weeks, 3 credit hours, Lab Fee $150

Object Permanence is the understanding that objects continue to exist even when they cannot directly be observed. This fundamental psychological concept, first conceived of by Jean Piaget concerning cognitive development, will serve as a foundation for the investigation of historical and contemporary objects. Through studio practice, research and discourse, students will examine notions related to perception, context, engagement and the socio-cultural wakes left by objects. This multi-level course will hybridize art and social science by introducing students to a range of technical and conceptual strategies to understand, interrogate and intervene with objects from life. Technical instruction will include a wide range of approaches from hand building and mold making to digital scanning in three dimensions, observational sculpture and investigative writing.

SEWING THE SURFACE OF THE WATER | Performance, 2011 (Craft Mystery Cult)

SEWING THE SURFACE OF THE WATER | Performance, 2011 (Craft Mystery Cult)


Jovencio de la Paz is an artist, writer, and educator. His work explores the intersection of textile processes such as weaving, dye, and surface design, with broader concerns of ancient technology, language, codification, community, and identity. Interested in the ways transient or ephemeral experiences are embodied in material, de la Paz looks to how knowledge, stories, and memories are transmitted through society in space and time, whether semiotically by language or haptically by made things. He has exhibited his work both nationally and internationally, most recently at Threewalls, Chicago, IL; The Museum of Contemporary Craft, Portland, OR; Carl & Sloan Contemporary Art, Portland, OR; 4th Ward Projects, Chicago, IL; The Sculpture Center, Cleveland, OH; SPACE Gallery, Portland, ME; SOIL Gallery, Seattle, WA; Roots & Culture Contemporary Art Center, Chicago; The Hyde Park Art Center, Chicago; and Uri Gallery, Seoul, South Korea. He received an MFA from the Cranbrook Academy of Art and a BFA in Fiber and Material Studies from SAIC. He regularly teaches at schools of art, craft, and design throughout the country, including the Ox-Bow School of Art, the Haystack Mountain School of Craft, the Arrowmont School of Craft, and the University of Oregon where he serves as Assistant Professor and Curricular Head of Fibers

A Directional Antenna for Broadcasting Pirate Radio  , colored porcelain, copper, steel and miscellaneous electrical components, 28" x 10" x 10", 2016. 

A Directional Antenna for Broadcasting Pirate Radio, colored porcelain, copper, steel and miscellaneous electrical components, 28" x 10" x 10", 2016. 

Brian Gillis examines sociocultural issues as consequent evidence of particular historic moments. His work uses a variety of production strategies and conceptual approaches. These often draw from specific sites and related institutions, and range from the production of objects and editions of multiples to site-specific installations and actions. Gillis is the recipient of distinctions including fellowships from the Illinois Arts Council, Oregon Arts Commission, MacDowell Colony, and a recent residency at the Massachusetts Museum of Contemporary Art. Gillis has exhibited his work nationally and internationally at institutions including CUE Art Foundation, the Mint Museum, and the Milwaukee Art Museum, as well as the Cluj Museum of Art (Romania) and Heilongjiang University (China). He received an MFA from the New York State College of Ceramics at Alfred University and is an Associate Professor of Art at the University of Oregon.