My name is Hannah Gervais Miller, and I am 22 years old. An artist born and raised in Charleston, South Carolina. I live life by faith and for art, music, and relationship. I know the truth of who I am and what I was made for, so my life flows from that. I studied Fine Art, an emphasis in Ceramics and Drawing, just finished my BFA Exhibition in December 2014. I hope to get my LPC, doing counseling and art therapy in the future focusing in child trauma and sexual abuse.
I create functional ceramics and slip cast porcelain forms, drawing on them my sketches reminiscent of my time living among the poor in Nicaragua. With my work I hope to start a conversation about worth and value. I strive to create art that pushes value beyond aesthetic form to include deep appreciation of humble people and places.
Ceramics has a vast history ranging from a very functional part of life to a high-class commemoration of the beauty and luxury mostly seen in the use of porcelain, which is my clay body of choice. I choose porcelain for the stark contrast achieved between my drawings and the white clay body beneath them, placing my subject matter of the commonly overlooked and un thought of in clear light, and also because porcelain is associated with substantial worth and significance. I want to honor as well as give the value and lost richness back to the forgotten and ‘worthless’ portrayed in my work, and also to the art of slip cast porcelain itself. I do this by rendering my Nicaraguan home and friends in raw yet delicate sketches on my slip-cast forms. There is a tension in my work between the porcelain material that our culture reads as highly significant and the “mundane” sketches of a place and its people that we as Americans rarely prize. This tension produces a new type of commemorative ceramic: one that honors the locale and people I love and deem truly worthy.
Finding value and worth in the seemingly insignificant and lowly parts of life inspires me, greatly influences what I create, and informs how I will move forward with my work.