BRIE RUAIS   information


Brie Ruais: Movement at the Edge of the Land
Moody Center for the Arts, Summer 2021. Curated by Frauke V. Josenhans
Photo by Nash Baker

Ruais conceived a site-specific exhibition for the Moody Center for the Arts that evokes a powerful encounter with the elements through large-scale ceramic sculpture. Working with the equivalent of her body’s weight in clay, Ruais’ relationship with the material allows her to explore themes of embodiment, materiality, and the interdependence of the human and ecological worlds. (- Frauke V. Josenhans)




Uncontrollable Drifting Inward and Outward Together (130lbs times two)
, 2021, Glazed stoneware, rocks, hardware, 90 x 172.5 x 2.5 in. Photo by Nash Baker


Detail: Uncontrollable Drifting Inward and Outward Together (130lbs times two), 2021, Glazed stoneware, rocks, hardware, 90 x 172.5 x 2.5 in


The floor installation Withdrawing Body, Emerging Earth is made of eight mounds of dirt, gravel, and rubble, arranged in a circle that continues beyond the building.
The gallery’s wall of glass bisects one mound, bridging the inside to the outside and revealing the false boundaries between the constructed and natural environment. The porosity created by the windows provides a line of sight and a path for movement, allowing the viewer to experience both proximity to and removal from the materials that articulate our everyday lives. ( - F. Josenhans, Photo by Nash Baker)


Closing In On Opening Up, 132lbs (Nevada Site 3), 2020, Glazed stoneware, hardware, 89 x 88 x 3 inches. Photo by Nash Baker


The works in each gallery generate and inhabit two apparently opposite spaces, the desert and the shore. The resulting contrast illustrates the dualities that define our society: the margins and the center; the mind and body; the natural and human worlds. Each gallery prompts a physical and sensorial experience through the engagement with the earth-colored, emergent ceramic sculptures. ( - F. Josenhans, Photo by Nash Baker)



Gravel Pit Gestures, Mine & Yours,
2020, Archival pigment print , 30 1/2 x 45 3/4 in

While creating this series of earthworks that she began in 2019, Ruais considered surveillance photography as a perspective from which to document the relationship between the body and the land. Each earthwork was documented with a drone camera from a bird’s-eye view, which emphasizes not only the monumental scale difference between an indivudal body and the expansive landscape, but also the human and machine marks embedded in the land. (-FJ)


Withdrawing Body, Emerging Earth, 2021, Glazed ceramic, raw clay, dirt, rocks, gravel, construction debris. Photo by Nash Baker

The outdoor works manifest as sculptures in two parts: ceramic perimeter sculptures surround holes dug in the ground, while the innner forms rest on the dirt piles nearby. These interventions in the landscape imitate the impressions made by the artist’s own body. (-FJ)





The installation in this gallery alternates moving images with static sculptures to evoke the shore as a liminal space where disorientation and disintegration lead to transformatiom. The installation brings the viewer face-to-face with the powerful push-and-pull of waves at the edge of the land. (-FJ)


Interweaving the Landscape (six times 130lbs), 2020, Pigmented and glazed stoneware, hardware, 128 x 225 x 7 inches
Photo by Nash Baker. Collage with photo of contrails in Nevada sky.

This piece is composed of six forms, each 130lbs, that are woven together into a grid on the wall. The forms move independently of each other, but always acknowledge each other through their shared traversal of the same plane. The horizontal lines reference a landscape: it’s sky and layered horizon; while the vertical curving lines reference features cutting through that landscape that hold and knit it together: rivers, trees, the sun. (-B.Ruais)



Tidal Movement,
2019, 3 channel video, 12 minutes (This is a 2:30 minute reel)

I made a performance with clay at the beach in the Fall of 2019. I placed 130lbs of clay where the water meets the shore, a shifting location which changes by the minute with the tide.  This was a site that would never be fixed, and so I moved with it, pushing the clay up the shore with the incoming wave, and towards the ocean as it went out. It was like learning to dance with a new partner.  In ten minutes the clay became saturated with water and disintegrated. The human body is about 60% water, a female body has a cycle that corresponds with the moon’s, and yet syncing up with this staccato tidal rhythm felt impossible. (-B. Ruais)
(Thank you to Zane Harris for his drone camera filming & editing, and Meryl O'Connor for filming)



Installation view: Brie Ruais: Movement at the Edge of the Land, 2021, Moody Center for the Arts, Photo by Nash Baker


Compressing Eastward, Three Times 130lbs, 2021, Glazed stoneware, hardware, 69 x 60 x 6.5 inches. Photo by Nash Baker. Collaged with image of New Mexican badlands

Ruais cultivated this gesture of compression in response to the urban space surrounding her, in NYC, on an island pressed between land and sea.
These are three entities (perhaps human, perhaps geological) transformed by forces that act upon them. Three thin expanses of clay on the floor were pushed
in succession against the wall. Each consectutive rammed form was shaped by and nested into the previous one. (-FJ)



Detail: Compressing Eastward, Three Times 130lbs, 2021, Glazed stoneware, hardware, 69 x 60 x 6.5 inches


Compressing from West and East, Six Times 135 lbs, 2020. Glazed stoneware, hardware, 74 x 128 x 6 inches. Photo by Nash Baker

The exhibition reflects the inspiration that the artist finds in the varying environments she inhabits, the urban landscape of New York City bounded by the sea, and the open deserts of the Southwest. By provoking an encounter with them, the exhibition lends tension and beauty in the body’s relationship to the elemental world. (-FJ)





Installation of Night Gallery Exhibition Spiraling Open and Closed like an Aperture, November 2020



The things we build, the things we let fall apart, the things we destroy
, 2020, Unfired stoneware, rocks , Dimensions variable, 36 feet by 12 feet



Turning Over, 128lbs of clay and another of rocks and rubble
, 2020, Glazed and pigmented stoneware, rocks, rubble, hardware, 80 x 78 x 4 inches
Collaged with an aerial photo of Owen's Lake, CA
In the Crosshairs
, 2020 , Archival pigment print , 30 1/2 x 45 3/4 in


With and Against
, 2020, Archival pigment print, 30 1/2 x 45 3/4 in



Circling Inward and Outward, 128 lbs
, 2020, Glazed and pigmented stoneware, rocks, hardware, 96 x 92 x 3 inches
Collaged with photo of tire tracks in desert saltscape



Detail: Circling Inward and Outward, 128 lbs, 2020



Enveloping, Merging, and Expanding, two times 130 lbs
, 2020, Glazed and pigmented stoneware, hardware, 100 x 103 x 3 inches
Collaged with photo of tire tracks at gravel pit



Desiccating From Center (Salton Sea), 130lbs
, 2019. Glazed and pigmented stoneware, hardware. 83 x 80 x 2 inches. Detail below
Collaged with photo of the Salton Sea, CA







Installation image of the exhibition WAYS, at albertz benda gallery, NYC, 2019
From left to right: Making Space From the Inside, 130 lbs (Tight Squeeze), 2019. Glazed stoneware, hardware. 65 x 59 x 2.5 inches
Making Space From the Inside, 130 lbs (Black Ice Thaw), 2019. 70 x 64 x 2.5 inches
Making Space From the Inside, 130 lbs (Fully Dilated), 2019. 78 x 70 x 3  inches




Turning and Turning in the Widening Gyre, two times 135lbs,
2018, 130 x 67 x 3.5 inches, Pigmented stoneware, transparent glaze, hardware. Photo by Nash Baker



Interweaving the Landscape (four times 130lbs),
2018. Glazed and pigmented stoneware, hardware. 96 x 152 x 8 inches



Installation image of the Topology of a Garden Series in the exhibition WAYS, at albertz benda gallery, NYC, 2019



Topology of a Garden, Northeast, 135 lbs, 2018. Pigmented stoneware, acrylic paint, hardware. 72 x 88 x 2.5 inches
Collaged with photo of the clay sculpture being made in the artists' garden.



Detail: Topology of a Garden, South, 132 lbs, 2018. Pigmented stoneware, underglaze, hardware. 49 x 90 x 2.5 inches



Attempting to Contain the Center,
2018. Videostill



Attempting to Hold the Center, 135 lbs,
2018. Glazed stoneware, hardware. 44 x 44 x 9 inches


Installation of solo exhibition at Night Gallery, LA, April 2018



Gathering the Folds, 135 lbs,
2018. Glazed stoneware, hardware. 61 x 47 x 4.5 inches
Collaged with screengrab of the film "Hiroshima Mon Amour", 1959



Premonition of a Butterfly, India Ink and 130 lbs of Clay
, 2016, Video, 9 minutes




Broken Ground Red (130lbs of clay spread out from center),
2017. Glazed stoneware, hardware. 77 x 77 x 3 inches
Collaged with photo of Bisti/De-Na-Zin Wilderness, New Mexico



Blue Perimeter (Push your body weight in clay in a clockwise circle until the end becomes the beginning)
, 2016
62 x 62 x 4 inches, Pigmented stoneware, transparent glaze, hardware. Collaged with photo from a road trip.



With Their Inners Woven (2x 130 lbs)
, 2017, 94 x 88 x 6.5 inches, Glaze stoneware, wood, hardware. Collaged with risograph.



Red Pushes 1, 2, and 3 (130lbs each)
, 2017, Each measures approximately 72 x 23 x 14 inches, Glazed ceramic



Performance still, 2012
Collaged with image of tractor tracks in mud.


Installation image of "130lbs of Proximal Frontage" at Mesler/Feuer Gallery, NYC 2015
Right: Double Unzipped, 450 lbs, 2015. Pigmented and glazed stoneware, hardware. Sculpture in three parts, 108 x 89 x 4.5 inches
.



According to the Body
, solo exhibition at Youngworld, Detroit, 2016
Front: How to Wander (Push double your body weight in clay in a spiral, create hiccups along the way, then arbitrarily strike out in one direction.) 260lbs, 2016, Unfired clay


How One Can Be Two, 300 lbs (Two people’s combined body weight in clay), 2013, Pigmented and glazed stoneware, hardware
Sculpture in two parts. Ring: 89 x 84 x 3 in, Circle: 59 x 55 x 6 in


In imitation of Push Ahead, Turn 180 degrees, Repeat (132 lbs., Yellow and Violet), 2014, 90 x 40 x 3 inches, Glazed stoneware, hardware


All artwork, photos, and collage are Copyright Brie Ruais 2021, unless otherwise noted.