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Fall 2014 Competition:


art that reveals hidden stories and the duality of all things

3rd Place Winner

Medium:  ceramic, burnished with terra sigillata, coated in ferric chloride, and fired inside of aluminum foil saggar with salt and horsehair
Size: 26” x 3” x 4.5”
Price: $400

artist statement

I’m Noah Starer, a Ceramics Artist from Ariel, WA. Early in life, I was lucky to meet artistic mentors who inspired me to view my world through many lenses. Having spent nearly 18 years as a social worker, doing ceramics as a part time hobby, I now embrace art as my full time passion. I am inspired by the universal, shared experience of humanity and intrigued with the function of art that dives into the unknown and causes people to ask, “What’s going on here?” It is here that I find the expression of my authentic self as artist. I approach my artistic process with a sense of exploring, tearing, breaking, expanding, in order to discover what the clay came to teach. The only boundaries are those of my own limiting beliefs.

I interpret the theme of “Fire beneath the Ice” as a call for exploration.  In the same way that every piece is new and fresh to me, I hope my sculptures may catch you off guard, uncover an unexpected awareness, or reveal some aspect of your own story through the cracks, curves, lines and breaks in the clay. I invite you to ask yourself, what is begging to be discovered or revealed or celebrated or mourned?

artist bio


1992 – 1994 MSW-Boston University School of Social Work, Boston MA

1988 – 1992 BA-Fort Lewis College, Durango CO



2012                Opened Studio, Noah Starer Ceramic Arts, Ariel WA

2011-2012      Studio member, Radius Art Studios, Portland OR

2010-2011      Studio member, Cindercone Clay Center, Bend OR

2007-2010     Hand-building classes, Seward Park Clay Studio, Seattle WA

2000-2001     Work sold in retail store Fire Opal, Brookline MA

1999-2001      Studio member, Feet of Clay Pottery, Brookline MA




“Slip, slab, coil, pinch, press, throw” Eutectic Gallery’s  Second Annual Review/Preview , Portland Oregon

Marin Society of Artists, “Fresh Art” Ross, CA

59th International Open Exhibition, “Bold Expressions.”Northern California Arts Sacramento CA

All Media Exhibit. Chico Arts Center, Chico CA

Shapes of Influence | Contemporary Ceramics  Springfield Art Association Springfield, IL

Less is More: small works in a great space. St. John’s College,  Annapolis MD.  

Work in this exhibition was purchased into private collection.

Open to Interpretation: Abstract Art.  Valley Art Center, Chagrin Falls, Ohio.  

Work in this exhibition was purchased into private collection.

VESSELS Sebastopol Center for the Arts, Sebastopol, California


Georgie’s Ceramic and Clay Co, Portland OR


Cindercone Clay Center, Bend OR

Noah Starer

noah starer
Ariel,  Washington [USA]

art scene today Q & A

Q: Where do you see yourself in the art scene today?

A: I would definitely consider myself an emerging artist within the naked clay movement; that is ceramic art that is not glazed.  This would include work such as pit fired, horsehair, barrel firing, and of course my work, which is saggar fired inside of aluminum foil.  I started doing ceramics full time in the fall of 2012 and now have a body of work that I have been showing across the United States.  It is tough as a ceramics artist because there is certainly more recognition for the classical arts, but I think this is changing as more and more artists working in ceramics are recognized as fine artists; I would like to find myself in that category some day. 


Q: What is in your inspiration?

A: My work is inspired by curves and lines found in nature and our daily lives.  I will often find myself inspired by a need to express an emotional state, something I feel strongly relates to my background as a social worker.  Many of my sculptures have an abstract figural form and this is inspired by my desire to empathize with the viewer and connect with them.  Simple forms communicating complex ideas or emotions inspire me.


Q: What are your challenges?

A: The biggest challenge is internal; struggling to maintain a belief in oneself.  I recently described submitting work for galleries and exhibitions, as a continuous job interview.  The struggle is maintaining a belief in your work while getting rejected time and time again.  I think this is the struggle of all artists because we have this need to express ourselves and show people our work and yet so few of us every get to be seen or heard.  The challenge is, with the odds stacked against you, to grow and continue to remain fresh and to challenge oneself to never be complacent. 

Q: How did you/do you choose your medium?

A:  I work with clay because of the flexibility of the clay.  You can break it, tear it, mash it, and if you don’t like it add some water and start all over again.  There is such freedom in using clay.  I have told people that I try to approach my work with a beginner’s mind, as if I had never touched clay before, and I believe clay has forgiveness for beginner’s hands.  Clay is not rigid or demanding and that allows me to be my authentic creative self.  

Q: Which artist has influenced you the most?

A:  There are many artists that have influenced me including Picasso, Van Gogh, and Matisse.  But I am also influenced by more contemporary artists such as Simcha Even-Chen,  Mario Sammut, and Alberto Bustos.  Lastly I would have to say that I was deeply influenced by my aunt Judith Reifman who was a sculptor, and by my high school art teacher Lynn Smith. 

 other work by the artist


Fire Beneath the Ice-View Exhibition