Joyce Michelina Centofanti, PhD is a professional Artist, Art Educator, Ceramics and Special Education Consultant. “Dr. Joyce” has exhibited in twenty-six solo and fifty-seven juried exhibits in museums and galleries throughout the United States, Canada, China, Russia and Sweden. She’s presented internationally, nationally and at state conferences. She was an Artist-In-Residence, Great Navajo Nation Art Teacher, Tenured University Professor, Resource Specialist and President of the Colorado Art Education Association. Awards received include the Marion Quin Dix Leadership, Outstanding Alum Professional Achievement, NAEA/CAEA National Pacific Region Higher Education Art Educator of the Year, and University Faculty Award: Excellence in Student Engagement.
“Dr. Joyce” Michelina Centofanti
Home; Italian traditions; California’s surfer lifestyle; New Mexico’s high desert; the Oregon coast and international travels inform Joyce’s artwork. She embraces her soul with family gatherings, memories of laughter and colorful images of adventures. Thus the theme of adventures, the house/home has been a recurring symbol along with a little humor. Her current ceramic and encaustic on clay artwork celebrates the freedom from inscribed boundaries by bringing the outside to the inside.
The houses, images, and stacked forms are metaphors about places, journeys and perceptions of isolated beauty. The organic qualities of the clay symbolize the fragile qualities of nature, while the steel represents the strengths. The clay body, glazes, and firing techniques are chosen in correspondence to the subject matter and sustainability of the materials.
The materials used to execute her clay sculptures are low, mid and high-fired PaperClay, underglaze, glaze, luster, reclaimed glass and/or steel. Unfired clay, oxidation, reduction, Raku, salt and/or wood are the firing processes. The clay body, glazes, and firing techniques are chosen in correspondence to the subject matter. Each work builds its own characteristics through the careful planning of the colors, firings and small details. The clay body, glazes, and firing techniques are chosen in correspondence to the subject matter and sustainability of the materials. Eco-friendly PaperClay is used because it incorporates recycled paper; it is often fired only once or not at all. Much like the reclaimed materials non-renewable resources are conserved leaving a much smaller footprint of energy used to create an artwork and by using materials once destined for a landfill non-renewable resources are being conserved.
Her ceramic artwork celebrates the freedom from inscribed boundaries by bringing the outside to the inside, while her bronze works and paintings are a reflection of the world often seen in her dreams and or daydreams. The intent of her artwork is to invite the spectators into the environments as a participant in the colorful and whimsical spaces evoking a lighthearted and sometimes humorous atmosphere. The houses, images, and stacked forms are metaphors about places, journeys and perceptions of isolated beauty. The organic qualities of the clay symbolize the fragile qualities of nature, while the steel represents the strengths.
Her bronze sculptures combine her ceramic and sculpture backgrounds utilizing the casting of bronze, iron or aluminum, reclaimed steel and glass to the ceramic artwork. An important aspect of these sculptures is releasing the control of the clay, steel, bronze and iron often allowing these materials to dictate their own results. By combining traditional art forms with a creative and experimental attitude, humorous and thought provoking sculptures are created. With the use of color and bold compositional form, the intent is to draw viewers into the scenes as laughing and/or contemplative participants in the often-lighthearted environments. As an artist her definitions of a time and place are explored and knowledge of visiting a place is connected to the meaning of the experience. Evoking the response of a smile and laughter, or passionate inquiry from others through the artwork is one of the goals.