Brittany Dias (she/her) is a mixed-media artist with interdisciplinary training, working primarily in ceramics. As a sculptor with a love for materials and process, she also frequently works in metal fabrication, concrete, glass, wax, textiles and other various materials. Brittany is a Providence born artist. She received her BFA in ceramic arts and a minor in art history from Rhode Island College in 2017 and received her MFA from the New York State College of Ceramics at Alfred University in 2020. Her work has been exhibited in galleries throughout New England and New York. Brittany has been the recipient of numerous rewards including Best in Show, Harriet Brisson Ceramic Award, and Antonio Cirino Memorial Fellowship grant in 2018 and 2019.
My sculptural practice embodies personal psychological and physical experiences, bridging the connections between the interior and exterior body, public and private space, and vulnerability. The essences of events and moments, emotions and physical responses are materialized through clay and mixed media, relying on memory and intuition.
The simultaneity of internal and external exposures of the body is presented as a whole. Body is all-encompassing, referring to both the physical and mental attributes of the individual. The mind is internal, and includes thoughts, emotions, experiences, memory, and trauma. The physical body is skin, flesh, and bones, both interior and exterior. The mind, however, is not visibly accessible, but is as real as the tangible body. Both are entirely connected. Abstraction allows elements of the physical and mental body to coexist visually.
Practicing art is a function of my search for understanding and meaning while grappling with the events and consequences within my own existence. My thoughts are often chaotic, perhaps due to my anxious nature, leading to attempts of creating order. What is created in the studio is understood to be extensions of myself, depictions of my reality. A constant combination of making and stepping back to analyze is a therapeutic engagement, creating a space which is vulnerable, allowing for self-reflection and understanding. This vulnerability makes the studio an outlet for release from exhaustion, anxiety and tension. The search for order and understanding is achieved through the rendering of the materials. Above all else, the making process is most important. Exploring and experimenting with materials results in a collection of decisions, thoughts, and steps taken to create work which feeds a hopefulness that the material and process will reveal something unexpected.
In my sculpture, there are moments gripped together and confined, revealing tension and stress with other areas that are unraveled and falling apart. It may appear to be heavy; yet elevated by structures. It may be stagnant in its position, but reflect movement in its composition, forms, and surface. Some key words and ideas thread through my sculptures: tension, stress, anxiety, heaviness, internal and external body, collapse, resilient, death (grief and loss), beautiful and lively, deterioration, chaos, visceral and grotesque.