Author/Artist Name

Maddie OrttFollow



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Academic Level at Time of Creation


Date of Creation

Spring 4-15-2022

Artist Statement

My work focuses on themes of identity and personal history, the things that make us who we are. Whether that is what kind of

childhood we had, the trauma we have endured over the years, the thoughts about ourselves that we believe to be true, or just simply the environment we grew up in. I’m interested in the psychology of metacognition and how we can become so analytical and aware of our own thoughts or the thoughts others have of us. This internal investigation of why myself and others are so critical of ourselves has been one of the driving forces in my work.

Using food and human anatomy in unexpected ways, I question the causes and outcomes of unhealthy perceptions of our bodies. I cover heavy subjects like eating disorders and the detriment they do to your mental health and your way of thinking. Such as, the idea of craving to be able to see your own bones, or the unhealthy thought expressed by an acquaintance, imagining how skinny they could be if their intestines were removed from their body. I believe clay as my medium helps me bring these ideas to fruition by the malleability of the material and how it is both visceral and fragile.

These concepts in my work have been very personal to me, which has made the creation of these sculptures more of a healing process for myself. Digging into my own eating disorder as part of the inspiration for my work was something I never thought I would do, but now realize it was necessary for my artwork. I hope the viewer can gain a greater understanding and perspective of what it’s like to experience these disorders and not be hesitant to discuss them as well.


John Utgaard; Rebecca Williams; Danielle Muzina; T. Michael Martin


I presented Terracotta sculptures and terracotta slip casting work, I used underglazes in the greenware state on some pieces, and then had them bisque at Cone 06 and used Cone 04 glazes and fired them to Cone 04 for the final glaze firing. This body of work is based around the theme of eating disorders, body dysmorphia, and our memory. Such as, my brain piece, titled Recollection is based off of becoming obsessed with saving your memories in these vacuum sealable bags due to the fear of Alzheimer's. Then another example of my work that touches more on eating disorders is my piece titled, Self-Scrutiny, this piece focuses on the craving to see your bones and how it can make you in situations dread to eat, whether you are suffering from binge eating disorder or anorexia to give representation to each side of the eating disorder spectrum.




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