Art reflects experience and much of what I have produced in the past has reflected my personal visual experience. In both my tile and vessel work, I have drawn from encounters with ancient Mediterranean monuments, Islamic architectural embellishments, Persian rug patterns, South Asian temple architecture, and East African material culture.
My work is motivated by concern for our contemporary world and current events. These pottery pieces are based on historic Middle Eastern forms. I wish to call attention to work that represents to me the great loss I feel, first for the human victims of the current conflict in that region, and second, for the lost, stolen, or destroyed antiquities which represent Humanities’ cradle of civilization.
Personal experiences besides my rich visual memory have shaped my perspective. In 1979 I saw the desperate faces of Palestinian children in a West-Bank refugee camp. In 1982 I worked with Afghan refugees in Pakistan, and in 2001 I worked with Tutsi and Hutu Refugees from Burundi in North-Western Tanzania. I have not experienced war first hand, but these encounters have moved me to a place where I must do something with my work that has a positive impact and encourages those who feel trapped, oppressed and at the mercy of world powers acting out of self-interest and not for the common good.
I grew up in a Mennonite community valuing peace and believing in non-resistance. This perspective linked with life overseas where it was easier to view the USA through others eyes, has made it difficult to accept a foreign policy that disregards concerns of our allies and squanders post-911 goodwill. Admitting our mistakes can be a first step toward healing the wounds of this conflict.
Continuing a policy of arrogance and unjustified aggression will only breed more hatred for the land we love.
I hope contemplation of this work encourages creative re-thinking of the path to security and peace.
“The purpose of art is washing the dust of daily life off our souls.” Pablo Picasso
2015 Goshen College Hershberger Gallery Exhibition
2014 Art of the State Exhibition, State Museum in
Suzanne Arnold Gallery, Lebanon Valley College,
Mayfair Arts and Crafts Festival, Allentown,PA
Recent Ceramic Work Hartzler Gallery, Eastern Mennonite
2013 Longs Park Arts and Crafts Show 2013, Lancaster, Pa.
Porch Walk Art Show, Lititz, PA
46th Annual Lititz Outdoor Fine Arts ShowLititz, Pa. (First place in Sculpture 2012, Judges Award 2013)
Suzanne Arnold Art Gallery, Anneville,Pa. (first place award 2013, fourth place award 2014)
Art at VMRC Harrisonburg, Virginia
2012 Isadore Gallery Lancaster, Pa.
2006 Recent Work, Elizabethtown College, Elizabethtown, Pa.
Art at VMRC, Harrisonburg, Va
2004 Messages, Lancaster Museum of Art, Lancaster,Pa.
2002 Sculptural Vessels, Hartzler Gallery, Eastern Mennonite University, Harrisonburg, Va.
Harvest View Gallery, Landis Homes Retirement Community, Lancaster, Pa.
Voices; Exhibition for the Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues, United Nations, New York,N.Y.
1998 Shoestring Gallery, Rochester, N.Y.
On and Off Center, 4-Person Show; Lancaster, Pa.
1996 Exhibition; American Craft Council, Charlotte, NC
1995 Wichita National; the Wichita Center for the Arts, Wichita, KS
Texture, Pattern & Image, Goshen College, Goshen, IN
Borders Bookstore, Lancaster, Pa.
1994 Islamic Texture & Pattern, Mulberry Street Gallery, Lancaster, Pa.
Here to Timbuktu, Lancaster, Pa.
1993 Fiber Works, (focal point of exhibition entitled Common Threads) United Nations, New York,N.Y.
2003 Through These Doors, Tile Mural Park View Mennonite Church, Harrisonburg, Va.
1997 Donor Wall, Tile Mural Christopher Dock High School, Lansdale, Pa.
1995 Memory, Tile Mural Landis Homes Retirement Community, Lancaster, Pa.
1992 Confluence, Tile Mural Lancaster Mennonite High School, Lancaster,Pa.
1987 A Key to Life, Tile Mural Rochester Institute of Technology, Rochester, N.Y.
1986 Metamorphosis, Tile Mural Eastern Mennonite University, Harrisonburg, Va.
2006 Ceramics Monthly, October, Relationships by Chad Martin
2006 Pottery Making Illustrated, Nov/Dec Dennis Maust’s Antique Surfaces
1990 Ceramics Monthly, October, Dennis Maust, by Ron Netsky
1983 Ceramics Monthly, December, Afghan Refugee Potters, by Dennis Maust