Kiel is a ceramicist currently living in Bethesda, Maryland. They received their BFA in Craft and Materials Studies from Virginia Commonwealth University in Richmond, VA. While in Richmond they also completed a Fellowship from the Virginia Museum of Fine arts and participated in a residency at Shockoe Bottom Clay before relocating to the DMV.
I think about my work in the legacy of the button factory my great grandfather worked his way up to owning after immigrating to NYC, from Eastern Europe, in 1912. Collaging ceramic decals remnant from the factory on mass-produced second-hand ceramics I try to draw from Trompe l’oeil and op art to make surfaces that challenge the viewer’s sense of focus. I feel dizzy surrounded by an untrustworthy culture constantly competing for my attention all while trying to erode my own sense of history and truth from right out from under my nose. A now third-generation Jewish American I know my material and immaterial inheritances are real I know my history is real. I can’t believe I have to remind myself.