Irja Bodén

My recent work, The Stacks, echo the impressive collection of trophies and awards my father won as a competitive shooter when I was a child, in northern Sweden. At this point I’ve lived in the US for many years and looking back comes naturally and, at times, comes unbidden. Arranging and rearranging my hollow ceramic forms into towering stacks is a way to suggest something familiar, whether from the past or from more recent times.


Each series of The Stacks is made of five to fifteen pieces, between six and 16 inches tall, with variances in color, texture and form. I secure the stacking components with a little silicone, though sometimes I leave pieces precariously un-attached. The separate groupings tell a unique story of relationship, balance, and scale. More recently I’ve begun using molds to slip-cast objects for inclusion in The Stacks.


I am a mixed-media artist, but the core of my work has always been ceramics, using both handbuilding and the wheel. I’ve exhibited in numerous shows and my work has found its way into various private collections and cupboards nationally and internationally. Most recently, I had a solo show, Horse Virtues, at the Pleiades Gallery in New York City, in 2016, and a two-person show, Interwoven, at the Roxbury Arts Group Gallery, in 2017. I received second place at the Northeast Ceramic Sculpture Exhibition, in Poughkeepsie, in 2017. I am the recipient of several residencies and grants, including the Vermont Studio Center (2017, 2018), a Public Arts Fellowship from New York State Council of the Arts (2017), and the New York Foundation for the Arts (2000, 2003, 2007). I have a Bachelor of Fine Arts from the State University of New York in Potsdam, and in the ’90s I co-founded SoHo Potters in New York City. I currently live in Ghent, New York, where I maintain my studio.

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© Amos Eno Gallery 2019