Recent creatures crafted in the workshop of Calvin Ma make seem endearing and childlike. Yet, Ma’s ceramic sculptures are part of an ongoing, cathartic purpose, the artist says. In a statement, he describes why it was “ natural to tap into this childlike sense of exploration and storytelling through my artwork.”
“I utilize the action figure form in my sculptural work to explore personal issues and struggles with social anxiety,” the artist says, in a statement. “As an adult, I face difficulties in the social environment. Meeting new people, being in the company of strangers, crowds, peers and intermittently among friends and family brings about a heightened nervousness that takes over and impedes my ability to function socially. Even as a child I was reserved and apprehensive, so I turned to toys to keep me entertained. I believe the tactile activity of playing with them coupled with my active imagination helped establish this passion for the action figure early on.”
Ma has shown his work across the work, from San Francisco and Seattle to Chicago and Philadelphia. See more of his work below.