Originally from Connecticut, Marsha Karagheusian has traversed the country in a diagonal while pursuing her creative studies. She’s been a student, a teacher and an artist her entire life, stating that there is much overlap between these three roles. She holds a BS degree in Art Education from Southern Connecticut State University, a BFA in Ceramics from Northern Kentucky University, and an MFA in Ceramics from Arizona State University. Her studies included working in the private atelier of artist Michael R. Skop in Fort Thomas, Kentucky, drawing and sculpting from the live model. She was an Artist in Residence in Vallauris, France (walking the grounds where Pablo Picasso produced ceramic work for eight years) and also in Newcastle, Maine at the Watershed Center for the Ceramic Arts.
As a Professor of Art and Art Education at Xavier University in Cincinnati for nearly four decades, Karagheusian has impacted countless students while teaching all levels of Ceramics, both handbuilding and the potter’s wheel, as well as Art Education. Imbedded within this time was a decade long chairmanship of the Department of Art when she had the opportunity to reshape the faculty and staff, simultaneously raising two children. She maintains a studio in Northern Kentucky producing artwork that has been juried into shows at the local, regional, national, international and on-line levels. Her work has evolved from vessel-making to a sculptural practice, while investigating the idea of containment. Karagheusian was asked to serve on the Board of Directors of the National Council on Education for the Ceramic Arts (NCECA) in the roll of onsite conference liaison for the 55th Annual Conference to be held in Cincinnati in March of 2021.
Karagheusian observed her first potter in the third grade while visiting a historically simulated colonial American village in New England, and at that precise moment, she found her passion. Like most ceramic artists, she began her journey as a potter, exploring form and space and what may be contained within the confines of a 10,000-year tradition. Her work slowly evolved into handbuilding, telling her story within the traditional genre of the female nude. The containment then shifted from the negative space of vessels to the female psyche, a carrier of narratives portraying inside/outside meaning, her history, her story.
Karagheusian’s work is influenced by the 40,000 year old tradition of storytelling through the portrayal of the human figure. She is concerned with the female spirit, her body, mind and soul, and the inherent interconnectedness. Her figures reference what they may be thinking, feeling and perceiving, with memories steeped in nostalgia, while balancing the interplay between interior and exterior.
Marsha Karagheusian November 2020