Linda Sormin


5 March – 1 May 2022

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Accompanying the landmark exhibition, No Boundaries: Contemporary Canadian Ceramic is a solo exhibition for Linda Sormin.

Linda Sormin is a professor at New York University, but no less Canadian for that. More than anyone engaged in the medium, over the last decades she has pushed ceramic into wholly new terrain, in which the vessel disappears to be replaced by networked clouds of coloured threads and pipes. She integrates into the clay components broken fragments of things, discarded and disowned detritus, and pieces of writing, to create linear, open sculptural works that resemble neurological structures. This is probably a most appropriate analogy: her process of searching, collecting, and assembling seems to be geared to the capturing of the ephemeral: incidents and moments that have gone, leaving behind only fragments of evidence. She describes her outlook:

“To make space for new discovery in any particular place or situation, how might I loosen my grip on language and methodology? Where is there opportunity to reshape my material, visual, spatial, conceptual and kinetic expectations? Research includes scavenging, collecting, disassembling and rebuilding fragments into new forms.”

Through sculpture and site-responsive installations, Linda Sormin explores fragility, tension, migration, survival and change. Her work has been exhibited nationally and internationally, most recently at United Contemporary (Toronto, ON), Patricia Sweetow Gallery (San Francisco, CA) and Ferrin Contemporary (North Adams, MA).  She was a participant at the European Ceramic Workcentre in the Netherlands this year, creating new work for three exhibitions: “Ceramics in the Expanded Field: Sculpture, Performance and the Possibilities of Clay”, at MASS MoCA, North Adams, MA; Peach Corner Gallery in Copenhagen, Denmark opening in 2022; and Messums Wiltshire.

Sormin lives and works in New York City, and is Associate Professor of Studio Art at New York University.

Linda has taught ceramics at Emily Carr University, Rhode Island School of Design, Sheridan College and Alfred University.  Born in Bangkok, Sormin moved to Canada with her family at the age of five. She has a BA in English Literature and worked in community development for four years in Thailand and Laos. She studied ceramics at Andrews University (BA, English Literature, 1993), Sheridan College (Ceramics Diploma, 2001) and Alfred University (MFA, Ceramic Art, 2003).