Ball Dude, large
11 x 4 inches
Fred Yokel has been working in clay for over three decades. All of his pieces are one-of-a-kind, made by hand using a derivation of the coil method. His ideas come from many places, but primarily from watching humans in everyday situations. He gets inspiration from sports, yoga, dance and sitting on a bench watching people walk by. He sketches his figures and invents titles that could go with them to explain their predicament. The process is very similar to photography but in a 3-D version. The artist is trying to capture that one instance that will let the viewer see and feel the story and emotion surrounding the subject. His art is a humorous take on the human condition.
Fred Yokel studied at SJSU, where he concentrated his studies in ceramics under James Lovera, Robert Fritz and Herbert Sanders, with some influences from David Middlebrook. After graduating with a BA in Ceramics, he became a production potter for several years at two Bay Area pottery houses. Production pottery was educational, but he got more pleasure out of designing and building one-of-a-kind pieces and exploring raku surfaces and organic looking textures. He decided to go back to school at California Institute of the Arts, where he received his MFA in Design/Advertising.
There are so many things to explore with clay- texture, color, form. I find much of my inspiration in the natural world. Rocks, plant life and sea life all give me ideas for starting points to build upon.