Also known as: Joseph Chiarello
Joey Chiarello was born in 1978 in a small mountain town called Glenwood Springs, Colorado. Joey grew up surrounded by high mountaintops, wild animals, and natural rocky terrain. Going on long journeys through the woods with his mother at a very young age helped to develop his creativity and love for the natural world.
Joey attended Yampa High School, an alternative high school in Glenwood Springs, where he focused on the arts. Instead of attending his own graduation, Joey went on a journey to Borneo. Fascinated with the thick jungle, tropical animals, and bugs, Joey saturated his mind for future inspiration. His love for animals and the majestic world that surrounds them made him curious about clay. After traveling the U.S. for a year Joey moved to Honolulu, Hawaii, where he grabbed his first block of clay.
Joey is primarily a self-taught artist. In 2002 he took his first ceramic sculpture class under the instruction of Esther Shimazu, one of Hawaii’s master ceramicists. He quickly developed the skills and fascination for creating his own style of work. He later took workshops from other master artists such as Sergei Isupov and Michael Sherrill, which helped further sharpen his skills.
In the summer of 2008 Joey moved to Seattle, Washington to further pursue a career in art. In 2008 he had his first art show in Seattle at the Pacini Lubel gallery, and in 2009 his first solo exhibition. Becoming emerged in the art world in Seattle, Joey started to share and teach his skills at Seward Park Clay Studio (January 2009). After enduring the dark cold sky’s of the Pacific Northwest for 2 ½ years Joey decided to move back to the Hawaiian Islands.
Since returning to Hawaii in 2011 Joey has been teaching at Hawaii Potter’s Guild and has participated in various exhibits throughout Honolulu including: Honolulu Japanese Chamber of Commerce Commitment to Excellence (2nd Place winner); Hawaii’s Modern Masters Luxury Row, Waikik (November 2011); Gallery at Ward Center with 2 dimensional artist Darius Homayounpour (February 2012); Contempo, Nieman Marcus (Summer 2012); and Robyn Buntin of Honolulu with 2 dimensional artist Moira Hahn (July 2012). He has also exhibited at NCECA in Seattle (March 2012).
Currently Joey is a full time ceramic artist who works out of his home in Honolulu, Hawaii where he is keeping busy preparing for future shows to come.
Growing up, I have always had a great appreciation of the many forms and capabilities of the entire animal kingdom. I am captivated by the stillness of the instinctual nature of each diverse creature. Through the Zen of simple being I find my answers. I can have a goal in mind, however I must be open to the clay to guide me along to achieve my most accurate form of personal expression. When I give in, creatures seem to flow from my fingertips.
I work with narrative character creation and interaction. I love to see and study many old ancient designs and interpretations. The content includes a wide range of Native, Asian, folk lore and spirituality as paintings, drawings, and tattoos. The "tattoos" and paintings on the work express both personal and spiritual growth. I also use the illustrations as narrative snap-shots to capture moments of evolution as I grow and learn.
I combine intricate detail requiring many firings using under-glazes, glazes, slips and luster in the surface embellishment. Whiskers, bones, precious metals, steel, and stones are used as accents for claws and more. Much of my focus also goes to the eyes. I feel the eyes are the most expressive feature; referred to by many as "the window of the Soul". I couldn't agree more.