As a social animal, humans continuously shift between seemingly contradictory states – impulse and control, individual versus group, suppression and openness, transition versus boundary. Christyl Boger is interested in the intersections between these states, and how their limits are defined and transgressed. Due to their style, medium, and format, Boger’s sculptures are both figurative works and decorative objects. They stand as metaphors for a human subject shaped by social and cultural traditions, yet conflicted by the pull of unnamable desires.
Boger’s interests make ceramic sculpture an especially apt choice of medium. Because of their ceramic composition, each figure is simultaneously skin and drape, thought and actuality. Once a soft and malleable clay form, each pose is made permanent under intense heat. Superficial layers and glazes add further complexity to Boger’s exploration of the fragile balance between human nature and social superego. In what ways do the protective boundaries we keep both privately and socially influence how well we know our selves and each other? As we negotiate our individual natures within complex social structures, what roles do these layers play?
About the Artist
Christyl Boger was born in El Paso, Texas in 1959 and currently lives and works in Bloomington, Indiana. A graduate of Ohio University, Athens, Ohio, she has exhibited works at Staged Stories: Renwick Craft Invitational 2009 at the Smithsonian American Art Museum in Washington, D.C (2010), and in solo shows at the Stewart Center Gallery at Purdue University, West Lafayette, Indiana (2011), the Hiestand Galleries, Miami University, Oxford, Ohio (2010), and the Longstreth-Goldberg Gallery, Naples, Florida (2006). In 2007, Boger was Artist in Residence at the International Ceramic Research Center in Denmark, and Evelyn Shapiro Foundation Fellow at the Clay Studio in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania in 2001.
Sea Toy, 2007
Weekend State, 2005
Ceramic, glaze, gold trim, decals