In a one person show at the Frank Lloyd Gallery from May 13 to June 17, 2006, Peter Shire will present new ceramic and metal sculpture. Two new fountains, configured as large vertical stainless steel sculptures, demonstrate Shire's well-known playful constructivism. The most recent work often combines ceramics and steel. In one group of towering teapots, the metal serves as structure in counterpoint to the organic shapes of peaches. In another group of ceramic teapots, the steel elements are used as fanciful ornamentation.
Skewed angles, geometric abstraction and a savvy design sense define Shire's ceramic constructions, which often have functional roots. Stretching functionality to its limits, Shire builds teapots that play with the boundaries between sculpture and industrial design. Shire's work, which has also included furniture and architectural design, is on view at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art in conjunction with the Ettore Sottsass exhibition. Several works are included in the LACMA show, which is titled Peter Shire: The Los Angeles Connection to Memphis.
Born and raised in Los Angeles, Shire has been producing ceramic work from his Echo Park studio since the early 1970's. Throughout his varied career, he has looked to the landscape of his community and neighborhood for inspiration. He also sites influences ranging from Bauhaus aesthetics to the revolutionary work of ceramic artists like Kenneth Price. As part of the Italian design movement Memphis during the 1980's, Shire gained international recognition for his works in ceramic, glass and metal. These experiences with design, from furniture to tableware to architecture, continue to inform his work today.
Over the past thirty years Shire has been involved in many exhibitions and projects as well as public commissions. His tile murals can be seen throughout Los Angeles. His work is also held in many public and private collections throughout the world. Museum collections include the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, the Los Angeles County Museum of Art, the Victoria and Albert Museum, London, and the Israel Museum, Jerusalem, Israel.