Maxwell Mustardo

Maxwell Mustardo

Current Artist in Residence

Maxwell Mustardo was born in 1993 in rural New Jersey. He received his Bachelor of Fine Arts and Bachelor of Science in Art History and Theory from the New York State College of Ceramics at Alfred University in 2017. During his time at Alfred, Max earned multiple awards including an ARGUS grant for materials research, a Levine Endowment grant to study material culture in Japan & South Korea, and a nomination for the Thayer Fellowship in the Arts/Patricia Kerr Ross Award as the SUNY finalist in the visual arts category. In addition, Max studied industrial design and material culture at the Central Academy of Fine Arts in Beijing, China. His current practice encompasses scholarly writing, curation, teaching, design, and sculpture. He is currently an artist in residence at the Houston Center for Contemporary Craft in Houston, Texas.

Artist Statement:  I approach making as a vital opportunity to examine perception and signification. My work engages with ceramics as a polyphonic medium: one which speaks in multiple voices simultaneously. By working within simple constraints, such as the format of the mug or torus, I explore orchestrations of elements of surface, form, materiality, and function. Many projects revolve around broad, reverential notions of the vessel, the body, and language. Attempts are made to continually dissect processes, re-visit forms, and re-frame themes to agitate evolution, antagonize static thinking, and fuse opposing notions. Objects are focused upon as vital witnesses and participants, reflections and poems, animate and imagined.

The Artist-in-Residence program at the Sonoma Community Center provides artists the space and time to create a cohesive body of work that reflects their time in Sonoma. The Artist-in-Residence program is funded 100% by the generosity of the community through fundraising and class enrollments. Residents help to run the ceramics studio, fire kilns, and teach classes.