Christopher David White is an American artist currently living and working in Richmond, Virginia. Born in Bedford, Indiana in 1976. He began his career in the arts through drawing and painting. It wasn’t until 2008 when he started to work heavily with clay, and received his Bachelors of Fine Arts in Ceramics from Indiana University in 2012. He went on to receive his Masters of Fine Arts in Clay from Virginia Commonwealth University in 2015. He was the recipient of the Center of Craft, Creativity and Design Windgate Fellowship in 2012 and later was awarded ‘Most Environmentally Conscious’ at INLight 2014, juried by Denise Markonish. His work has been featured on several prominent art publications including Juxtapoz, Beautiful Decay, My Modern Met, and This is Colossal. Christopher David White’s work has been shown both nationally and internationally and held within numerous private collections. His sculptural works are handmade predominantly from clay and rendered with acute attention to detail, often resembling decaying pieces of wood, rusted metal, and other objects in various stages of deterioration. His current works explore the relationship between humanity and nature and humans’ apperception of their environment.
“With nature undergoing a perpetual transformation, everything derived from nature is subject to the same repetitive cycle of growth and decay—of life and death. Change is a constant reminder that permanence is the ultimate illusion. It is through the creation of hyper-realistic sculpture that I explore the relationship between nature, man, and the phenomenon of impermanence. I seek to expose the beauty that often results from decay while, at the same time, making my viewer question their own perception of the world around them. To accomplish this, I begin by observing instances of decay within my surroundings that I find inspiring due to form, color, or texture. With clay as my medium of choice I then meticulously render by hand those elements, taking advantage of clay’s innate ability to mimic a wide variety of materials. I utilize trompe l’oeil as a stylistic choice to emphasize the concept that our understanding of the world is an illusion. The juxtaposition of natural and man-made features in combination with the skewing of scale, proportion, and material, helps in creating an altered perception – forcing the viewer to look closer.
There is a peace that can be found in even the simplest things. Ordinary elements within our environments offer both visual and physical reminders of our connection with nature. I am inspired by the small, overlooked aspects of our environment, finding enjoyment in the unexpected discoveries that come from simply being observant of the minutia and incorporating those mundane forms into my work. Crumbling Brick, rusting metal, and rotting wood become sources of inspiration. In my observations I also see similarities between the processes that occur in nature and those that drive us. By combining both man-made and natural elements within my work I hope to highlight the fact that we are not separate from nature but are, in fact, part of it.” – Christopher David White