Professors Jefferson Ellinger (architecture) and Thomas Schmidt (art) have received a 2018 Merit Award in the ArtFields southeastern regional art competition for their installation LED Kintsugi (formerly named Hybrid Skins), created with graduate research assistant Paul Stockhoff. ArtFields took place in Lake City, South Carolina, April 20-28 and showcased work by nearly 400 artists from the 12-state region of the southeastern United States. LED Kintsugi was on view in the Jones-Carter Gallery.
The ArtField works were judged by a five-member jury, and a total of 10 awards were given. In addition, the Lake City Creative Alliance, which runs ArtFields, has purchased LED Kintsugi and will soon permanently install it in a Lake City venue.
Funded with “Research Through Making” grants by the College of Arts + Architecture’s Digital Arts Center, the work was first exhibited as Hybrid Skins in the Projective Eye Gallery at UNC Charlotte Center City in the 2016 Digital Dialogues exhibition. The wall-sized installation is comprised of fiberglass-backed ceramic tiles, fired in the traditional way, but cast from variegated molds digitally designed and created with the KUKA robotic arm in the School of Architecture Fabrication Lab. Cracks in the porcelain, produced during and after firing, form a spectacular surface pattern that is illuminated from behind.