Visiting Assistant Professor of Art
Studio Art Major & Anthropology/Sociology Minor
Joe Page hasn't forgotten the impact Knox College had on him as an
undergrad. Just two credits shy of becoming an anthropology/sociology
major, he switched to studio art and never looked back. "Knox gave me the opportunity to discover what I would be really passionate about doing for the rest of my life. I wouldn't have ended up an art major if I'd gone anywhere else on my list of schools."
It was in the art department where former Knox Professor Tetsuya Yamada was a tremendous influence on Page's development as an artist. "Tetsuya's expectations reached further than the formal creation of artwork, demanding that students question how and why they made the choices they took to arrive at a finished piece." Associate Professor of Art Tony Gant was also a great influence on Page's work. "He taught me how to take a self-inventory of the functioning components in my artwork, encouraging me to alternate between borrowing from and running up against the trends and theories in contemporary art."
Page says his Knox professors have influenced the way he teaches. A current visiting assistant professor of art at Whitman College in Walla Walla, Washington, Page teaches courses in ceramics and drawing in addition to advising and independent studies with senior art majors.
As a scholar-teacher, he shows an unchecked enthusiasm for the work of his students and helps them better understand and refine their own processes while simultaneously learning from his students and ferociously engaging in his own art. He recently exhibited in group shows at the Philadelphia Clay Studio, the Archie Bray Foundation, and China Central Academy of Fine Arts in Beijing. His latest solo exhibition was at Cedar Crest College in Allentown, Pennsylvania, and he is currently curating an exhibition of contemporary ceramics at Whitman College's Sheehan Gallery.
Page says that Knox was the perfect place for him not only because it allowed for exploration, but because it gave eventual shape and focus to those priceless accidents of exploration. At Knox he was able to discover and then go beyond just discovery to create work that has real meaning.
"My primary concern is one of immersing the viewer in a place of both comfort and uncertainty," reads the first sentence of Page's artist statement on his website. Page's work does just that. His "weather pattern" and "flow chart" sculptural ceramics work within a number of strict material, color, and shape confines he has set (comfort) in uncanny combination to convey something unique in aggregate (uncertainty). He is especially interested in the simple form of the bubble and environments passing through and being created from the bubble.
"Knox has taught me to cast a large net while following the things I'm passionate about, gathering experiences, people, and locations along the way. It also taught me to seek out and engage these things critically and openly."