Calgary Outside the Box features Katrina Chaytor, Mackenzie Kelly-Frère, Natalie Gerber, and Natali Rodrigues.
Katrina Chaytor’s pottery embraces utility, a craft concept that engages an intimate connection to daily life. The concept of utility is one of accommodation and collaboration between maker and user. In her work, she explore the symbiotic relationship of form, containment and surface decoration. She makes pots to serve, to heighten daily experience and through the action of use, mediate between art and life. Katrina earned an MFA in form New York State College of Ceramics at Alfred University, Alfred, New York.
Mackenzie Kelly-Frère is an artist, writer and educator currently living in Calgary, Canada. He was educated at the Alberta College of Art + Design (BFA 1998) and Nova Scotia College of Art & Design University (MFA 2005). Mackenzie currently teaches in the Fibre Program at the Alberta College of Art + Design. His studio practice is rooted in a contemplative approach to cloth construction using natural materials and plant-sourced colour. He favours compositional strategies where both the duration of and intervals between pattern elements are based on random numerical sequences, measurements taken from his body, and antique winding tools made irregular with time and wear. In combination, these methods produce complexity and variations that echo patterns found in nature and the irregular symmetries of the body.
Natalie Gerber began her studies in 1995 at The Natal Technikon, in the Fashion Design program, Durban (South Africa). After immigrating to Canada her interests in textiles and design developed while studying classical tailoring and couture design under Calgary designer Mithè de Fontenay. Enrolling at the Alberta College of Art & Design, Natalie earned a BFA Degree (with Distinction) in Fibre/Textiles in 2003, and later in 2007, a post-graduate Certificate in Creative Pattern Cutting for the Fashion Industry, from the London College of Fashion in London (England).
As an artist, designer and maker I am inspired to create functional design for everyday living. While craftsmanship is important to my creative process, so too is function. I combine my love for illustration, surface design, clean lines and hand-printed fabrics with conscious material choices and in-studio practices.
Natali Rodrigues was born in Kenya, to a German mother and Goan father. In 1975 the family immigrated to Canada. Her early education was in French, German and English. These various cultural facets could have lead to feelings of disenfranchisement and alienation. Fortunately the contrary was the case: what seems like disparate cultural elements are united by a rich familial history of story telling, of retaining and reinforcing identity through language, faith and journey.
Going against the conventional wisdom surrounding artists and craftspeople, Natali has never felt she is an outsider, or of being Other. Rather being a maker has allowed her to mark and contextualize her place within the multicultural, multi-faith and cosmopolitan community that is Canada.
Natali’s work explores the threads that bind her family together across the globe, through the exploration of language, faith and journey. These three themes manifested themselves in works that link personal story to the larger narratives of liminal space.