Clay. I’ve always loved it. I’m able to think with its tactile quality and feel in my hands, knowing I can mold it into any shape. This most primal element of the earth grounds me and leads me on my journey in my imagination. Working with clay keeps my mind open and my creativity expansive. There seems to be no dividing line between the clay, my inventiveness, and the forms I create. Whether functional or decorative, clay serves as a blank canvas for my whimsy and the colors I love to use.
Lori Dresner grew up outside Detroit, across the street from the Detroit Zoo. Her interest in art became apparent as she drew all the animals she saw there. She began art classes in first grade, discovering clay while at summer camp at Interlochen Center for the Arts. She spent her teens in the ceramics department of her high school and eventually went on to receive a BFA in Ceramics from The Rhode Island School of Design and an MA in Ceramics from the University of Michigan. Storytelling and an interest in video and film making led her to the Art Institute of Chicago where she earned an MFA Degree in Video Arts.
In the early 1980s, Lori worked as a video editor in Chicago, and was an active member of The Chicago Editing Center where she curated several video art installations. Her video works were included in Media Burn, an independent video archive that aired on WTTW’s Image Union. The first Video Art Exhibition at Chicago’s Navy Pier in 1982 was one of her major achievements before moving from Chicago to New York.
Lori’s proficiency in video editing led her to a professional career in television production and eventually to Paris where she was recruited by an international advertising agency. Lori spent over twenty years living in Paris, producing commercials and print ads for clients including Coty, LMVH, Lancaster, L’Oreal, Mars, Procter & Gamble, Toyota, and Vivienne Westwood.
Fate and family brought her back to the United States in 2008, She relocated to Aspen, Colorado and reconnected with clay and the art world.
Lori’s sculptural work invokes the triangular form however, the three-sided surfaces that predominated in her work over the years is giving way to other shapes and forms.
Drawn to storytelling, Lori’s most recent work brings together a collection of saucy characters embedded in sculptural ceramic vessels and containers. Her unusual forms are an evolving canvas for her illustrations and designs. Inspired by an array of situations, emotions, thoughts, and fantasies, she brings imaginary and anthropomorphized creatures to life. Her travels and life experiences continually reshape her creative process.
Functional ware features jars of all sizes, platters, and mugs. Other works include mixed media wall art and paintings.
Since her move to Colorado, Lori lived and worked in both Denver and Aspen. She has taken part in several group and solo exhibitions in the Denver area including Core Gallery, D’art Gallery, and FooLPRoof Gallery. Exhibitions in the Roaring Fork Valley include The Red Brick Art Center, The Carbondale Clay Center, The Aspen Chapel Gallery, and The Aspen Art Museum.
She is collected by ceramics lovers all over the United States and her sculptures are on permanent display at the Karmanos Cancer Center in Detroit and the offices of Morgan Stanley in Denver.
Currently, Lori lives in Aspen with frequent travels back to her beloved Paris and other parts of Europe. She is building a new studio in Aspen’s central core which will open by December 2022.