/* Pinterest website claiming thingie */ /* That's it for the pinterest thingie */ Aberrant Ceramics: April 2010


Aberrant Ceramics is the artwork of Aaron Nosheny,
ceramic artist and potter in Tucson, Arizona.

I work in the medium of stoneware clay and make hand-built pottery, sculpture, hamsas, ornaments, masks, and a variety of other forms.

Self-taught artist on the autism spectrum. I like monsters, insects, weird animals, body horror, horror comedy, Halloween decorations, fast food mascots, kitsch – and all of these creep into my work, but there’s really no overarching theme. I feel like I'm frantically birthing as many clay monstrosities out into the world as I can.

Friday, April 30, 2010

Grell Shroom #2

Here is the second shroom sculpture to incorporate the grell brain mold. "What is a grell?" you may ask. Here is your answer, along with the first grell shroom.

Thursday, April 29, 2010


This is the first of my recent shrooms. It was inspired by the killer mushrooms in American McGee's Alice, which lie dormant until you approach them, and then suck you into their toothy maws, chew you up, and shoot you out the top, all the while spewing poisonous spores.

I had a rounder, firmer mushroom cap in mind, but the clay was too soft and the shape I cut out was too unstable so it collapsed into a pancake-like mass.

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Comical Horror Face, Black Skull, Charles Manson

These are three more trendy flat hanging sculptures. The first one I have labeled as "White Pimple Face" or "Comical Horror Face." The second one is a atavistic black skull which could also be used as a one-time-use clay knuckle weapon. The third one is an interpretation of Charles Manson, complete with a right-pointing swastika on his forehead.

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Evil Clown, Gibbon, and Green Devil

These flat clay images with a hole for hanging were all the rage in my circle in Tucson last year. Not really, since I don't have a circle, and if I did they probably wouldn't be into flat clay images of clowns, gibbons, and green devils, but it's what I was making about a year ago. They're less threatened by the terrors of gravity than the larger pieces. The survival rate is higher.

I'm embarrassed to admit this, but I can't remember if the middle object is supposed to be a gibbon or a lemur. Believe me, I'm fully aware of how inexcusable that is. I feel like my brain is turning to shit.

Monday, April 26, 2010


This is another experiment in sympathetic magick. After my experience with the Centipede Fetish, I wanted to make another sculpture to represent fear and then destroy it after having achieved an altered state of consciousness. I tried to make it ugly enough that I wouldn't mind destroying it, but it hasn't happened yet.

{2022.  It happened.  Purged.  And yet fear persists.}

The Fear sculpture uses the centipede mold and Barbie's squished face mold.

Sunday, April 25, 2010

Fetal Skull Column

Created a few years ago when I was in massage school and my life was deeply steeped in human anatomy, this sculpture combines all the appeal of an unborn baby's skull with the lazy, utilitarian attraction of a clay column.

Saturday, April 24, 2010

Worm Giraluna

Giralunas (a play on the Spanish word for sunflower, girasol) are undead-like plants from Leo Lionni's alternate universe botany textbook, Parallel Botany. This one is made with a worm or caterpillar mold for the tendrils.

I made it during the year-long period that my pottery studio was located at the teacher/founder's home, after we were evicted from the warehouse by the railroad tracks, before our later homes on 4th Avenue and Dodge Avenue. The greenware (unbisqued) giraluna amazingly survived a year and a half in the hostile environment of Tucson weather with only minor damage.

Friday, April 23, 2010

Meat Torso

This sculpture has "AN 97" carved into its base, which are my initials, but it's not my work. I bought it at a thrift store a few years ago. I would love to see some of my work for sale for $7 at a thrift store and now that I think about it, it's an option for unloading some heavy, fragile clay objects before I move.

Thursday, April 22, 2010

Warthog Column

Another column sculpture inspired by African animal life. I once touched a warthog at the Berlin Zoo. The warthog's broad, flat face felt oily and bristly, but it chose not to surgically remove my fingers. I also had a llama spit in my face in Barcelona for invading its personal space.

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Giraffe Column

This is one of my favorite sculptures. I love how the eyelashes came out. I like the very giraffe-like expression on its face. I like the contrast of the glazes for the body (Queens) and the spots (Stony Gray).

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Centipede Fetish

This is a statue of a centipede bodhisattva. It lacks anatomical correctness in that four pairs of legs is considered less than well-endowed among centipedes, but at least it has one pair of legs per body segment, which separates centipedes from millipedes, which have two pairs per segment. I made it as a part of an experiment in evocation. Achieve an altered state of consciousness by whatever method that works well, anoint the fetish with some symbolic fluid, and give it a task. This construct's task was to seek out industry secrets and bring them back to me. The experiment appeared to be a failure, but after quitting my recent job, I noticed a striking similarity between the owner of the business and a venomous, nightmarish desert creatures that lives under rocks. The industry secrets imparted by said boss were cynical and depressing but maybe he was merely an evoked entity acting on my own orders. I was tempted to destroy the statue in order to symbolically sever all ties with that particular company and amoral individual, but I like the sculpture too much.

Fetish in the title of this post refers to an object which one treats as sentient until it begins to act as such, usually for some esoteric purpose, not to a non-human object of sexual desire.

Monday, April 19, 2010

Severed Pieces of Me

Some clay sculpture at D's apartment. Every time we argue, I imagine D destroying these sculptures. It reminds me of the lyrics to the Alice Donut song "Roaches in the Sink":
Stagger down the hall/open up the door/ripped up photographs scattered 'cross the floor/severed pieces of me/pieces of my faulty personality
Now, if I may be permitted to be self-indulgent (as if I need YOUR permission), here are the individual pieces and a short novel about each one.

This is a driving wand. It's a magickal implement for coping with Tucson traffic. The idea is that there are many times in which one would like to make an obscene gesture to an inconsiderate fellow motorist, but, being aware that everyone in Tucson is armed and itching to use their weapons, refrains from "flipping the bird" out of fear of being killed. Instead, one could hold up a grotesque face and hope the target is merely stunned and confused rather than whipped into a murderous rage.

Praise Jesus that these other pieces don't really have stories behind them. They're just fragments that get produced when I can't think of anything else to make.

Sunday, April 18, 2010

Lira da Braccio #2

This is my second attempt to replicate this image of a decorated medieval stringed instrument. This time I ensured symmetry by printing out the leafy designs and the shape of the instrument itself and tracing them on the clay.

For comparison, the original image, the new Lira da Braccio, and the first one from last month.

I like the glaze (Randy's Red) on the first one better than the Nutmeg glaze on the second one. I also like the white eyes on the first one.

Saturday, April 10, 2010

Palo Alto

I'm visiting my sister's house in Palo Alto. This first sculpture was originally meant as a cake topper for her wedding in August, both she and her husband being lifestyle bicycle enthusiasts. It was too heavy to top a wedding cake and was also apparently neatly bisected in transit and now lives on their mantel. In reality they do not have disproportionately enormous noses and rarely wear berets as far as I know. They are also in possession of all of their limbs and are not merely stereotypically French-looking heads perched on a rudimentary tandem bicycle.

The large object to the left of the cake topper is a bicycle-oriented mixed-media piece by my father.

The other piece is a mushroom sculpture I brought with me on the plane.

Friday, April 9, 2010

Skull Panels

I'm in California, watching Jerry Springer and feeling pathetic. Jerry says, "Relationships rarely have happy endings." Here are some skull panels.

Thursday, April 8, 2010

Yet More Bongs

Two more unsuccessful bongs.

These are two tubolara, plant-like entities from Leo Lionni's Parallel Botany. The one on the right is also a bong.

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Less-Than-Functional Marijuana Paraphernelia

I originally intended to continue to post images of items with spikes similar to the Spiky Nyarlathotep a few days ago, but instead, here are some water pipes that don't really work. The first one had a hole too narrow to fit the pipe stem and I was so disappointed that I destroyed it, but not before taking a picture first. I immediately regretted the action.

Subsequent models have had similar problems with the hole either being too small or too large, and there seems to be some general design flaw as far as the internal chamber is concerned. Note the common color scheme of red and green, the colors of bong that belonged to my parents that had to be hastily disposed of during the Bust of '96 which I still have not been able to satisfactorily replace or recreate.

Funky vases or purely ornamental objects, but sadly no good for getting high.

Monday, April 5, 2010

Broken Giraluna & Missing Shroom

I went to the pottery studio on Sunday to pick up my work from the craft shows the two previous weekends. One piece, this giraluna that I've had for years, was broken.

Another piece, a recent mushroom, was missing. I resisted the atavistic urge to smash the broken giraluna in the street and write death threats against an imaginary shroom thief on the studio whiteboard and tried to look at it as a series of philosophical lessons. Stoneware sculpture feels permanent and has the potential to last for millenia, but in reality, especially for stoneware sculptures with a lot of tendrily protrusions, these objects are temporary structures which move in and out of my life like any other person, place or thing. As for the allegedly stolen shroom, ownership is temporary and sometimes these things tend to change hands without much warning; it could be viewed as a compliment that someone would like my little piece of anti-art enough to steal it. Less philosophically, I wondered if I could use the damage and theft to get a free month of studio membership and maybe some clay out of it.

Today I was pleased to learn that someone actually bought the missing shroom, which is a somewhat greater compliment than if it had been stolen. It sold for $15, which brings my grand total of sales for the two weekends to $33, of which I receive $23.10.

Sunday, April 4, 2010

Spiky Nyarlathotep

This is an interpretation of the Lovecraftian god Nyarlathotep, the Crawling Chaos and Messenger of the Outer Gods, in his incarnation as The Howler in Darkness.

An image of The Howler in Darkness from S. Petersen's Field Guide to Cthulhu Monsters.

Some other Nyarlatotep/Howler in Darkness sculptures on top of the Eldritch Hutch.

Here they are shown more clearly in an older post (ah, 2006, when I was still a disgruntled elementary school teacher and not a disgruntled underemployed Aspergian massage therapist.)