Faculty Profile: Carrie Parks-Kirby
The work of Carrie Parks-Kirby, professor of art and design, reflects an ongoing interest in historical, architectural, and ceramic forms while exploring contemporary themes through personal, often autobiographical, imagery. "I have felt deeply the influence of figures made for the tombs of ancient Chinese and Japanese nobles: Haniwa courtiers and farmers, Han dwellings and processions, T'ang horses and Q'uin soldiers," she said. "The eloquent gestures and facial expressions of Mayan and Olmec figures and the serene dignity of Etruscan terra cotta couples never fail to move me."
Her work has shown special interest in architectural tile work and environmental sculpture, while many of her figurative drawings and ceramic sculptures have been exhibited nationally and published in numerous books on contemporary ceramics. She also has completed several public tile installations, often in collaboration with the College's art students, and her works can be seen on Alma's campus.
After receiving her B.F.A. degree from Wesleyan College in 1976, Parks-Kirby spent nine months in Mashiko, Japan, where she worked as an apprentice for master potter Takeo Sudo and developed expertise in her major teaching area, ceramics. She also teaches drawing, three-dimensional design and sculpture.
Parks-Kirby received her M.F.A degree from Virginia Commonwealth University. She was the recipient of an Arts Midwest/NEA Regional Visual Arts Fellowship in 1994. In 2001 she received a Posey Award for Faculty Excellence in Teaching and Scholarship.