By Nastia Voynovskaya
As we walk down the street, read a magazine, or surf the web, we are being told to want. Attractive images play with our fancy, baiting the saliva of desire for new shoes, kitchen appliances, or what-have-you - all to whet our palates as we gaze upon the potential objects we could acquire.
In his sculptures of overwhelming material excess, Vancouver-based ceramicist Dirk Staschke explores the mechanisms that underlie human desire. When we allow ourselves to give in to our impulses, the longing for material wealth can have dire consequences - not only for our live priorities but our interactions with other people and the environment.
"I think material excess is caused by desire and desire is the root of most unhappiness," Staschke explained in an interview. "It is something that I personally struggle with from time to time."
Like the advertisements that constantly invade our visual field, Staschke's sculptures are impossible to ignore. Many of them towering over six feet tall, they fill the viewer with not only temptation but with fear and awe. Staschke is sensitive to the network of emotions and impulses that the sight of overwhelmingly tantalizing objects evokes.