Higher and Higher: Ben Medansky at Leclaireur


Anticipation for the first Frieze Los Angeles, which opens this Friday at Paramount Studios, is at a fever pitch. Among the myriad of events that are happening around the show, renowned West Hollywood art and design concept store Leclaireur will unveil ceramicist Ben Medansky’s large-scale sculpture “Stacks” which will be housed within the store’s courtyard. The party begins on Saturday afternoon with an aperitivo from 4 pm – 6 pm to toast the artist.

Medansky‘s work has long lived on the fine line between art and pottery. Using clay as a medium for his astonishing talent, he’s collaborated with Kelly Wearstler and Herman Miller. His work is in museum collections, like The Los Angeles County Museum of Art. When his beloved studio in downtown Los Angeles was burnt to the ground, the salvaged pieces were displayed — and quickly sold — by Lawson-Fenning and the effervescent Medansky moved into a new space in Frogtown. He was one of the first potters to collaborate with a coffee shop on a line of artisinal mugs — for G&B Coffee and Go Get ‘Em, Tiger — and we’re betting he’s the only one who’s designed a line of kicks that channels his most iconic designs — with Koio Sneakers. 

The varied environments of Arizona, Chicago and Los Angeles – both natural and manmade – are the foundation to Medansky’s creative inspiration. His work shows the influence of Brutalist and Modern architecture and industrial design. specifically the diverse architecture of downtown LA and it’s seemingly uninterruptable construction.
Now, with Stacks, Medansky is, once again, pushing the limits of what ceramics can be. Historically, totems have had a symbolic dimension to them. Not the way Medansky creates them. Instead, this abstract work focuses on his meticulous craftsmanship. Created by hand, its art is in how it reflects Medansky’s careful, measured approach to his work sculpting pieces that are simultaneously smooth and impeccably shaped while also retaining a rough quality that feels indelibly human and inviting. 

Ben MedanskyLeclarieur, 450 N. Robertson Boulevard, West Hollywood, CA 90048