Artist Statement

My name is Michal Golan and I am a jeweler, printer, and ceramicist. Thank you for taking a moment to visit my site.
My work blends my engagement with contemporary issues and my upbringing in Israel, among the archeological influences of countless cultures. As William Faulkner famously wrote, “The past is never dead. It’s not even past.” Nowhere is that more evident than in Israel. In many ways, my 
childhood was haunted and enriched by the long history of my homeland. Growing up, I was surrounded by archaeological sites revealing Roman 
mosaics and ceramic work from across eras and sources.

My whole life, I have been drawn to the aesthetics of time—and to the fraught and rich 
relationship between the past and present. I often strive to convey these tensions in my work. Some of my pieces utilize oxidation and other
techniques to approximate age and decay. Others of my pieces convey the vibrant colors of the contemporary middle east—a place shaped by 
tension, but also by a mélange of beautiful cultures and art which reconfigure the ancient traditions on which they are built.

Perhaps what I seek to experience—and convey—most in my work is freedom. Freedom to express my experiences through different techniques, styles, and colors. I may work on a vividly color piece inspired by Japanese animation one day and then transition to an earthy, metallic piece recalling ancient ceramic work the next.

In addition to the mosaic work that has been a core part of my identity as a ceramicist, I have recently embarked on a project celebrating woman 
through the creation of boxes. The concept of woman-as-vessel is not a new one. Patriarchal society has often literally and figuratively related to women-identified bodies as empty, lacking substance, and existing only to be filled by the projections of men on to us. My box project reclaims this figurative perspective on women; our capaciousness is also our power.

We can carry life within us—not only as mothers, but through the space we hold as healers, creators, leaders, warriors, advocates, and so much more. Each of my boxes represents a woman I know; some are self-portraits, some are friends, some are an aspect of womanhood in abstraction. But each is a facet of my own vision of womanhood—something so diverse and beautiful that I could spend my life creating around it.