NEHMA Presents Two New Exhibitions—Thomas Campbell and Particle & Wave: PaperClay Illuminated

Utah State University’s Nora Eccles Harrison Museum of Art (NEHMA) presents two new exhibitions this month — one is a mid-career retrospective of a multimedia artist immersed in street and skate culture, while the other is a showcase of forty-five international artists pushing the boundaries of ceramic art.

An opening reception for both exhibitions is Saturday, Jan. 25 from 6:30–8 p.m. and is free and open to the public.

Thomas Campbell: Lint basket supremeo and Unii ciøn yyikæ

Based in California, Campbell works in a wide variety of formats, from sculpture to painting to film, drawing inspiration from the fringes of contemporary American culture. His work was included in the seminal Beautiful Losers exhibition in 2004 and has been exhibited nationally and internationally.   

“It’s fabulous to have an important coastal artist like Thomas — who has such a rich history with skating, filmmaking, surfing, designing, and artmaking — come to the mountains,” says Bolton Colburn, NEHMA’s curator of collections and exhibitions.

A two-part, two-gallery sequence, Lint basket supremeo (a multi-medium survey) and Unii ciøn yyikæ (new works) give a sense of Campbell’s creative output over the last ten years leading up to today. Campbell completed his new works during an artist residency at Utah State University’s Department of Art & Design in fall 2019. 

Particle & Wave: PaperClay Illuminated

Particle & Wave: PaperClay Illuminated is the largest and first international traveling paperclay exhibition in the world, featuring a selection of artists from five different continents.

Paperclay is created by mixing paper pulp and other organic fibers into clay. This makes the clay both stronger and lighter, allowing artists to sculpt in ways that wouldn’t be possible using traditional methods. Though historically used for industrial purposes like making bricks and adobe, this technique has been embraced as a medium for artistic expression since the mid-twentieth century.

Particle & Wave brings together a global community of artists who are exploring the potential of paperclay and achieving new possibilities in ceramics. With subjects ranging from abstraction to realism, from the spiritual to the scientific, their artworks represent a diversity of thought and imagination as well as craft.

Particle & Wave: PaperClay Illuminated is organized by The International Paper Clay Exhibition Project and curated by Peter Held.