Saturday, 30 August 2014

emerging artist: Mac McCusker


 If you can, make sure to check out Mac's work in person - Closing exhibition on September 5th!

And see more incredible work here:

Wednesday, 27 August 2014

Artist-in-Residence/Post Graduate in Ceramics

The artist-in-residence will work to discover new ceramic technology and cutting-edge knowledge in the field of ceramics in conjunction with the faculty and students of the WVU ceramics program.
School of Art and Design-College of Creative Arts
Position Announcement

Position Description: The School of Art and Design with the College of Creative Arts (CCA) at West Virginia University (WVU) seeks applications for an artist-in-residence/post graduate appointment in ceramic research with WVU’s Ceramic Technology Research Program. The position is a full-time (1.0 F.T.E), temporary, benefits eligible, non-tenure track, faculty appointment beginning October 16, 2014 and ending May 15, 2015. The position is renewable for up to three years contingent upon the candidate’s successful annual review and the availability of continued funding.
This self-directed, artist-in-residence appointment is intended to provide an emerging ceramic artist with an opportunity to produce a significant body of work that advances the field of ceramics at WVU. The artist-in-residence will work to discover new ceramic technology and cutting-edge knowledge in the field of ceramics in conjunction with the faculty and students of the WVU ceramics program.
The candidate will have full access to all WVU ceramic facilities, materials, studio space and equipment, assist with the WVU Ceramics 3-D/Production Studio, participate with the School as a collaborator and mentor for undergraduate and graduate students in the School’s BFA and MFA programs, and teach one course per year. During the term of appointment, the candidate is expected to present one public lecture on the findings of his/her research/creative work in ceramics.
Required Qualifications:
• MFA in Ceramics completed by October 15, 2014
• Experience with 3-D prototype software and equipment.
• Knowledge of production studio methods is desirable, but not required
• Successful applicants must have a valid driver’s license and a personal vehicle in order to commute between WVU ceramic’s studios
Salary and Benefits: $18,044 for the initial 7 month appointment (October 16, through May 15, 2015) and if renewed, thereafter $23,200 annually. The position is benefits eligible. Semi-private studio space, most ceramic materials, all firings, and access to a 3-D ceramic printer will be provided for the candidate’s use.
Deadline: Application review begins immediately and will continue until the position is filled.
Application: For a complete application, interested candidates should submit the following application materials via email with all files saved as JPGs or PDFs:
• letter of application
• current curriculum vitae
• one-page artist’s statement
• names and full contact information (address, phone and email) of three (3) current references
• 15 to 20 images of the candidate’s recent creative work
• applications should be emailed to:
Shoji Satake, Associate Professor/Ceramics Area Coordinator
• questions about the position should be directed to the same email address

The School of Art and Design ( is a dynamic program with a growing reputation whose mission is to contribute to the greater good of art, education and culture. Approximately 250 undergraduate students and 20 graduate students are currently enrolled, and the graduate program is nationally ranked by U.S. News & World Report. The School has 17 full-time and 14 part-time faculty and is the only institution in the state that offers professionally-accredited (NASAD) programs including a BFA and MFA in Studio Art, a BA and MA in Art History, and a MA in Art Education. Teacher Certification is also offered.
The College of Creative Arts ( is one of 15 colleges within the university, includes the Schools of Music, Theatre & Dance, and Art & Design, and offers the state’s premiere training in the visual and performing arts. Each of these units has a national profile of excellence and all programs are nationally accredited (NAST, NASM, and NASAD).

The College of Creative Arts is housed in WVU’s Creative Arts Center and has more than 70 full-time faculty and 20 professional staff whose mission is to educate succeeding generations of artists, teachers, and scholars through an experiential student-centered approach to learning. The College advocates the Arts as a medium through which the diversity of human experience is understood and valued. Exemplifying excellence and innovation in performance, exhibition, scholarship, and creative research, the College offers artistic and cultural opportunities for the citizens of West Virginia and the regional community.

West Virginia University ( is classified as a Doctoral/Research University-Extensive and is the state’s only comprehensive doctoral-granting, land grant institution. WVU has a current enrollment of with approximately 28,000 undergraduate and 5,500 graduate students enrolled in more than 184 graduate and undergraduate programs. The university community is committed to student-centered priorities, academic excellence, research, creative activity and service to the state.

The city of Morgantown has 55,000 residents and has been ranked as the #1 Small City in America,” the “Best Small City in the East,” and the “3rd Best Small Town” in the nation. Boasting a strong economy and an unemployment rate well below the national average, the area also offers a wide variety of cultural and recreational activities.

West Virginia University has created a dual career program to help faculty partners or spouses find employment in and around the university (
West Virginia University is an affirmative action, equal opportunity employer. Women, minorities, individuals with disabilities and veterans are especially encouraged to apply.

This announcement is available in alternative format (e.g., large print, Braille, audio tape, disk) by contacting the School of Art and Design by phone at 304-293-2140 or by mail at Room 419-A, Creative Arts Center, Box 6111, West Virginia University, Morgantown, WV 26506-6111.

RBC Emerging Artist People's Choice Award

The Gardiner Museum presents the 4th Annual RBC Emerging Artist People’s Choice Award from September 2 to October 14, 2014. Supported by the RBC Emerging Artists Project, the $10,000 award – voted by the public at the exhibition and online – honours a Canadian artist (or permanent resident) who has been out of school and practicing professionally with clay as part of his/her artist practice for seven years or less. A national panel of artists, curators and arts educators nominated the five exceptional artists.

Online voting begins Wednesday, September 3 at 12 noon and ends Sunday, October 12 at 11:59 pm.
You can also vote at the exhibition from September 2 to October 12.

Find all the details here....

brian eno...

movie day: Ruth Duckworth Memorial Video

Tuesday, 26 August 2014

CREATIVE SASKATCHEWAN Investment Grant Outreach Tour

Creative Saskatchewan is hosting an 'Investment Grant Outreach Tour' in advance of our fall intake for program funding. This tour is open to all creative producers from our supported creative industries and is designed as an opportunity to learn more about Creative Saskatchewan, our funding programs, and tips for completing your funding application to us.

In an effort to reach as many Saskatchewan creative producers as possible, we are hosting 8 outreach sessions from August 25 through September 5 in a variety of locations throughout the province. Learn about investment opportunities for commercial creative industry projects and endeavours that can help you introduce your product to global markets.

Creative Saskatchewan is a new agency dedicated to the growth and commercial viability of Saskatchewan's creative industries. A series of workshops throughout the province will provide information about our investment programs and tips on compiling and submitting your application.

Creative Saskatchewan manages 9 investment programs; each program is designed to support the success of its applicants.   |   1-800-561-9933
 @creativesask   |

last call for submissions: The DO-GOOD Residency

Red Lodge Clay Center | Deadline: September 2, 2014 | Fee (USD): $10.00

The DO GOOD-MJ Wood Memorial Short-Term Residency is an underwritten residency intended to support ceramic artists who wish to develop a body of work with a socially-conscious spirit and a strong sense of community engagement. Through a competitive application process one candidate per year will be selected to work at the Red Lodge Clay Center Studios with a full waiver of the residency fee. An additional stipend may be available for selected projects to assist with travel and/or production costs during residency.
Dates of residency: Any time between December 1, 2014 and May 31, 2015
Apply through Slide Room

questions? contact:

technical tuesday: Les Blakebrough - New Work

LES BLAKEBROUGH NEW WORK 2014 from Paul Raffety on Vimeo.

Saturday, 23 August 2014

Spoon Me @ Medalta this week!

Spoon Me @ Medalta will go live online on September 1st @

The grand prize winner of a month long Medalta residency will be announced at the opening reception @ Medalta on August 28th from 7-9pm.  Let us know if you can make it! Make sure to check out juror Carole Epp's Musing About Mud blog for exhibition highlights and extended coverage on several selected spoon show artists in the coming months.

We have a Spoon Me event page on Facebook too, it's where we'll be sharing sneak-a-peek spoon shots before the show goes live on the 1st.

If you'd like to check it out and share it's at

Spoon Me's online guests will be directed from the page to view the show on Medalta's new Pinterest page. ***Note this will be live online as of September 1st.*** Spoons can be viewed and re-pined by other Pinterest users. The link on the photo remains with the image and will take viewers directly to the spoons purchase page which happens to be on our brand new Medalta online shop that we are also launching with the spoon show.  Our shop will feature contemporary ceramics from our exhibitions, starting with Spoon Me, as well as reproductions of historical Medalta pottery made in our Museums production studio.

At Medalta we are passionate about ceramics, from our clay industry past to the contemporary ceramics community. Through this exhibition, in the gallery and online, our goal is creating more space and opportunity for contemporary craft artists to engage with a growing audience...and our audience is eagerly awaiting this exhibition!

Friday, 22 August 2014

show us your influences - guest post by Avesha DeWolfe

#1&2 are Leigh Wen:  The line & meditative qualities of her work are so inspiring to me. She can capture the sea in a squiggle better than any other artist out there!

#3 is Simon Van der Ven: Just look at it! The delicacy, the patience, & the skill required to create this work is outstanding and something to aspire to.

#4 is Sandi Pierantozzi:
I’ve always been inspired by the whimsy & movement of Sandi’s work- that and the fact that she uses slabs rather than the wheel…I just love that!

#5 & 6 are me:
All my life the sea has been a source of peace, reflection, fascination, and endless inspiration. I have spent countless hours on or beside it in the quiet meditations of beach combing or listening to the movement of the water. Through form, surface treatment & glazing I hope for my sculpture & functional work to reflect some of my favorite qualities of the sea, as well as my life-long enchantment with it.

Instagram: @spiraltidepottery

Thursday, 21 August 2014

Girl Parts 2014 Invitational opens @ Mudfire This Saturday

August 23rd - September 30th, 2014

MudFire presents Girl Parts, an exploration of all things GIRL, whether they be sugar and spice or something more sinister. This show includes tiles, mugs, pots, sculptures, and a wide array of color, style and material.

This show has a bit of everything - from pretend boyfriends and lovely lady postcards to inticing sculptures from Kyungmin Park and Kirsten Stingle give us something a little more to ponder about femininity. Come see for yourself!

Starting August 23rd - this work will be on view in the gallery and online - we will be holding a reception celebrating these delightful works from 5pm - 8pm on Saturday August 23rd. Kirsten Stingle will be here to discuss her work.

Featured Artists
Shalene Valenzuela
Kirsten Stingle
Thomas Fink
David Robinson
Amanda Barr
Autumn Higgins
Justin Rothshank
Carole Epp
Chris Lewis
Kaitlyn Pruitt
Doreen Baskin
Meg Walsh
Kyungmin Park
Kathryn Rauth
Steve Hansen
Natasha Gainey
Amy Lynn Hess
Andy Jackson

175 Laredo Drive
Decatur, GA 30030

scholarship opportunity: The Trudie Alfred Bequest Ceramic Scholarship

Now open for applications: $4000 scholarship for your ceramic study in 2015

The Trudie Alfred Bequest Ceramic Scholarships 2015

The Scholarships are awarded annually and this year marks the fourth round since it began in 2011. This bequest is open to all students (currently enrolled), from second year onwards, of a ceramics certificate, diploma or degree course (or an arts course with a major in ceramics).
Trudie Alfred
There are 5 awards, each worth up to $4000.
Applications for TTAB close 5pm, Friday 19 September 2014.
The scholarships will be awarded in November 2014.
Valued at up to $4000 + 1 year membership of TACA ᐧ open to students enrolled in their second or subsequent year of a ceramic program ᐧ selection panel of three Australian ceramic artists from different states ᐧ must be currently enrolled at time of scholarship award ᐧ open to Australian citizens or those with permanent residency ᐧ selection criteria: academic achievement ᐧ quality of ceramic work ᐧ rationale for funding not previously received this scholarship ᐧ written report required at end of scholarship period.
Click HERE for an application form, terms and conditions.
Trudie Alfred from ann reed neice        Trudie Alfred1
Trudie Alfred (1922 – 2010) was a well- known Sydney potter and teacher with a great passion for ceramics. She struggled financially to sustain a ceramic practice in her early years as a potter and so, to assist others in a similar position, she left a generous bequest to The Australian Ceramics Association. Trudie specified that the funds be used to support the work of students preparing to embark on a career in the field of ceramics.

For further information, and AFTER you have read the Terms and Conditions, please contact Vicki Grima at The Australian Ceramics Association.

The Australian Ceramics Association
PO Box 274 / Rear 249 Bronte Rd
Waverley NSW 2024 AUSTRALIA
T: 1300 720 124
F: 61 (0)2 9369 3742
skype: australianceramics

call for entry: Morean Arts Center Cup Show

Biennial Cup Show

• Entry Fee: $30 per artist, up to three entries. • Work may not be larger than 16” x 16” x 16”.
• All work must be for sale. No single work may exceed $500 in value. Artists will pay a 40% commission to the Gallery on all sales.
• Artist responsible for shipping cost to and from the Gallery, shipping paid through UPS only, all work must include pre-paid return shipping label.
• Digital entry only, JPEG format, 300 dpi and no more than 2100 pixels at the longest dimension. All files must be labeled with artist’s first initial and last name followed by entry number (ie, e.smith01).
• The Morean Arts Center reserves the right to photograph exhibited work and use these or the artists digital images for repro- duction in both printed and electronic materials for publicity.

Click here to download entry form

September 5, 2014 - Deadline to enter
September 12, 2014 - Acceptance notification
October 1, 2014 - Delivery of work, no later than 5pm
November 15, 2014 - Return of artwork

Juror: Matt Schiemann
Matt Schiemann received his MFA from Southern Illinois University Carbondale. After graduation Matt became co-owner of St. Petersburg Clay Company. He is an adjunct professor for St. Petersburg College and Eckerd College as well as the manager for the St. Petersburg Artist in Residence at the Morean Arts Center for Clay. Matt shows his wood fired functional work nationally and has been published in numerous publications.

Entry Form | Biennial Cup Show | October 1st thru October 31st, 2014
Please complete and email images to with credit card information, or mail with check or cash for entry fees no later than September 15th, 2014, 5pm.
Click here to download entry form

*** sorry for the short notice. I sometimes don't see these calls until it's late. I know that's a pain. - Carole

Wednesday, 20 August 2014

residency opportunity: London Potters Guild

Artist in Residence Program

The Artist in Residence program was created to give up and coming artists an opportunity to set up a studio in exchange for 8 hours of studio technician support each week at the London Clay Art Centre.  This residency program allows ceramic artists to pursue their artistic endeavors while working in a state of the art ceramic studio and contributing to the community of fellow ceramic artists. 
What the London Clay Art Centre Provides

·       Private studio space, 7 feet by 10 feet, electric wheel, electrical hook-up, standard shelving
·       24 Hour access to the studio
·       Access to all equipment, (3 electric kilns, two slab rollers, well stocked glaze kitchen, two extruders)
·       Opportunities for sale of work in the retail store and Annual Fall and Spring Sales
·       Paid teaching and workshop opportunities
·       Exit Show/exhibition
·       Opportunities to be featured artist in the gallery space
·       Website visibility
·       Participation in bi-monthly critiques
·       Free attendance at workshops presented at the LCAC, in exchange for setup and tech work during workshop (above and beyond the 8 hours scheduled work each week)
·       10 Kilograms of reclaim clay a week provided
What the Artist In Resident Contributes

·       Commit to one 8 hour shift or two 4 hour shifts each week of technical work.  Shifts will be coordinated in conjunction with the Studio Technician and may include tasks such as helping maintain a clean studio, loading and unloading of kilns, maintaining glazes, slips, and clay reclaim.
·       Spend a minimum of 10 hours within the studio each week dedicated to personal work
·       Process all personal work (ie. load and unload kilns with personal work in them)
·       Maintain a personal blog or website that the LCAC can link to from its website
·       Contribute one piece to the LCAC permanent collection at the end of term
·       Resident Artists are responsible for their own housing
 Please visit their website for full details.
      London Potters Guild
C/O London Clay Art Centre
664 Dundas Street
London, ON. N5W 2Y8
Tel: 519-434-1664

movie day: Pottery maker

Pottery maker from Ante Gugic on Vimeo.

Remembering Kirk Mangus - an exhibition

The Nevica Project would like to take this opportunity to feature some of the beautiful work made by artist Kirk Mangus.  Kirk was a leader and mentor in the field of ceramics, serving as head of the ceramics program at the Kent State University School of Art from 1985 until his death in 2013. Collected nationally and internationally, he was the recipient of two National Endowment for the Arts grants, four Ohio Arts Council fellowships, a Pennsylvania Council on the Arts fellowship, and a McKnight fellowship residency at the Northern Clay Center in Minneapolis.  
We would like to give a special thanks to Eva Kwong, his widow, that helped make this exhibition possible. A portion of all the proceeds will be donated to the Kirk Mangus Ceramics Scholarship Fund at Kent State University.  If you would like to make a donation, please do so by sending a check to: Eva Kwong c/o School of Art, Kent State Univ., 400 Janik Dr., Kent,OH. 44242. It is a 501c3 account- all donations are fully tax-deductible for the donor and it would benefit so many students..

© The Nevica Project 2014
tel 1.406.360.0164
3717 N. Ravenswood Unit 115W | Chicago, Il 60613 

guest post: Art and Exhibition by Carter Gilles

I should explain. This isn't so much a guest post as it is a "Carole asked to repost a great post from Carter's blog" post. He didn't write this specifically for musing.... Carter Gilles is one of my favorite writers and thinkers (and provocateurs). I've long been inspired by his view of things (whether I agree or not) and his thoughtful and poetic means of getting his ideas across. Last week after movie day here on musing, Carter had some thoughts. Once again I was compelled by his writing and only wish I had more time to enter into longer conversations with Carter cuz I like how his brain works. I love the discussions and debates he's having. My thoughts are so much less focused and cohesive. They are interrupted, infantile and stalled. Carter seems to fill alot of those gaps in my thinking for me. I hope you enjoy his writing as much as I do. Please take the time to visit his website for more and to follow him on facebook as well since sometimes those amazing discussions happen over there as well. 

Thanks Carter!

Art and Exhibition

Do you exhibit your art? Are you an ‘art’ exhibition-ist? Are you, in fact, an exhibitionist? Does exhibition live comfortably in your psyche, in your soul? Is putting yourself out there for public consumption nothing awkward, nothing against your normal persona, and possibly even something you enjoy? Do you like strutting your stuff and scrambling for your 15 minutes of fame? Is living in the limelight exactly where you need to be?

When you put it like that it becomes an interesting question.

We live in a world where extroversion is taken as the norm. Introverts are often seen as people with a problem. They like keeping to themselves more than is healthy and don’t fully embrace La Dolce Vita. They need to be ‘fixed’, as if something is broken inside them. An affliction. Introverts are often happiest when they are by themselves or with small groups of friends, their family, or partner. Crazy, right! Its not that they can’t be sociable on occasion, act casual in the midst of a social storm, but that doing so is not always agreeable to them or in their own best interest…… Surely we must save them from themselves?

So we have this default in our society that often misunderstands the introvert as somehow deficient, as somehow abnormal, as somehow anti-social. And the parallel to how society understands artists can quite easily be drawn. We expect artists to be exhibitionists. We think that if you are not putting your work out there with the abandon of extroversion you are somehow doing it wrong. Starving artists are almost a type of sociopath. They just don’t understand that lurking in the shadows makes them dangerous. They don’t understand that wearing the occasional lampshade at parties is proof that you belong to society……

If your ‘Exhibition Record’ doesn’t include things like “Danced partially naked at the Normal Bar in front of 150 strangers, February 12th, 1994″, “Got sloppy drunk and proposed marriage to five marginal acquaintances, June 23rd, 2007″, or “Sang the entire Oklahoma song list in the subway train on the way to work, November 3rd, 2012″ somehow the word is that you are missing the point. Don’t let the highlight of your ‘Exhibition Record’ be tame things like “Smiled at a complete stranger as we crossed paths, September 27th, 1972″. Right? More is better. Ostentatious extroversion trumps milquetoast introversion the way the world plays out.

We tend to think that the ‘normal’ way of being an artist is that we get up on the commercial stage and flog our wares. We expect an artist to be this almost flamboyant purveyor of their own creativity. The good ones are always the eccentric ones. ‘Selling it’ means getting out there and putting on a show for the customers. The work doesn’t speak for itself (quite often), so we have to spin the stories, weave the yarns, and tell the tall tales to get our creative progeny successfully to market.
But don’t ask an introvert to do that naturally (or often well). Its a model built on extroversion and exhibitionism…… The values of the marketplace are the qualities of extroverts. That seems important to acknowledge.

Astonishingly, perhaps, not every artist is a natural extrovert. Being a professional artist simply means that for some of us there are competing values in our lives. And our occasional native introversion may be called on to bear the burden of sacrifice. You can’t sell work unless you put it out there, and there may be nothing more contradictory to staunch introverts than doing so. This seems worth pointing out. It seems worth thinking about.

Not that every artist is an introvert at heart, or that even the introverts among us are all as threatened by the seeming need for ‘professional extroversion’. I’m just pointing out that the environment of the selling arts is not based on or even nurturing to the psychological make-up of many folks who are artists. If we haven’t looked at the situation from this perspective we are likely missing something that is important.

Society operates on all sorts of defaults, and our expectations and understanding are often ruled by how these divisions are constituted. Maybe we need to investigate a bit deeper.

Take for instance the prejudice we seem to have concerning our inhibitions. To be inhibited means “unable to act in a relaxed and natural way because of self-consciousness or mental restraint.” Its a restraint of something that is assumed to be our natural state. Being “self-conscious” is somehow the wrong state of affairs. And inhibition is therefor something that is looked at as being unnatural. We expect ourselves to be fully free in exhibiting ourselves. Unselfconscious. Do you see where I’m going?

There is some confusion in our language about the ins and outs of our world, interior and exterior. ‘In-‘ and ‘ex-‘ divide the world, and as with other divisions we often seem to attach values to the way things fall out. ‘Good’ and ‘bad’ are qualities assigned to things according to how we feel the world is supposed to be. And in a world dominated by the values of extroversion is it any wonder that the ‘in-‘ values take such a beating……? Does that make it ‘right’?

Here’s another way of looking at inhibition. In a sense inhibition aligns itself with the values of introverts. Being self conscious is the natural work of introverts. Its not an unnatural condition and its not the defeat of more objectively valued exhibition. Being self conscious is one of the things that everyday ordinary people justifiably do.

Of course I’m not suggesting that some inhibitions are not bad for even the least exhibitionistic of us. But then some forms of exhibition are not that great either. If there is a flaw in extreme exhibitionists you might say that they are not self-conscious enough. You simply cant judge a quality on the extremes only (and if that last statement isn’t sufficiently meta, I’ll have to try harder….). ‘Inhibition’ shouldn’t be a dirty word.

Inhibition means keeping it close, not getting carried away with things that are not integral. It means choosing the values that are specifically internal. It points to a direction that is inward. It places priority on the inherent qualities of our personality and experience. It means a focus on the realm on insight and imagination. ‘Inhibition’ has gotten as bad a rap as ‘introversion’ if not worse. It might be better if we thought of ‘integrity’ when we refer to ‘inhibition’.

And if we look at it this way is it any wonder so many natural introverts are drawn to making art? Don’t we often see art as being something intimate to the maker? Isn’t an activity that asks us to sit in often quiet solitary contemplation and investigation as the basis of practice a natural sanctuary for those with introverted inclinations? Isn’t an artist’s studio a refuge from the hurly burly of the outside world?

For instance, in today’s world we see art functioning as a way of discovering who we are as individuals. These are values that introverts seem especially inclined towards. We look inside and see how that manifests in the conditions of our world. We bring forth ideas and imagination to discover our own place in the world. We discover our path. And its because so many of us are drawn to the contemplative side of introversion that art is such a haven for our creativity. We discover who we are by uncovering the language of the things that move us. What things matter? How do I see the world?
But art wasn’t always like that. And people throughout history didn’t always face such existential confusion about their role in the world and their purpose. Creative expression wasn’t always something we do to figure out who we are, to write our own destiny. This seems as much an accident of history and culture as any other.

Take this brief history of Western art and craft.

(Thanks to Carole Epp for sharing this!)
The point being that until Michaelangelo made creativity a function of individual genius (exceptionality) and celebrity things were operating on a much less extroverted basis. Tradition ruled ‘art’ production, and the individual craftsman was more dedicated to expressing part of that culture. They expressed themselves as part of that culture. Artisans were the keepers of value, preservationists rather than gymnastic exponents of novelty. Expression was something internal to a culture. An impression of that culture, one might even say. Expression was defined by its internalism. Identity was also much more focused on belonging to the group than in standing apart from it. The individual as representing that culture rather than something uniquely risen up from it.

Times change. Only as creative expression took on the character of the unique and exceptional did art seem to break away from its substantial grounding in tradition. And looking at art as requiring this ample extroversion only pays deference to an historical cultural accident and not some objective necessity. The door to extroversion was thrust widely open as soon as we made celebrity part of the equation. And that seems worth thinking about……

Signature style, brand, selling the sizzle, reputation, celebrity… all these things have extrinsic value written boldly across them. And if the current world, the status quo, seems to value these things more is that a lesson we all need to respect and obey? Are there equally worthy requirements of intrinsic motivation that escape this set of values? And are they less precious, in and of themselves?
I sure hope not! But maybe we need to do a better job of figuring this out. Maybe we need to look at the problem a bit closer than we (perhaps) often do. Something to think about at least………

Peace all!

Happy potting!

Make beauty real!

guest post: Shapes of Influence | Contemporary Ceramics by Chris Klaus

"Creativity is allowing yourself to make mistakes. Art is knowing which ones to keep." -- Scott Adams
In a wealth of good fortune, submissions from amazing artists across the nation poured in for the “Shapes of Influence | Contemporary Ceramics” exhibit.  

The juror for this exhibit was the well-known and highly respected Harris Deller, Emeritus Professor of Ceramics at SIU-C.  I do not envy the hard choices Harris had to make in selecting the fraction of artists accepted into the show, and even more difficult deciding upon the winners.

The exhibit’s 86 pieces represent a wide breadth of contemporary styles from sculptural forms and architectural structures to innovative surface effects upon more traditional forms.  What they share is a passion for creativity.  Carole Epp said "The show is amazing!" and I agree.
The Best of Show prize winner was an honor split between CJ Niehaus and Rob Boryk.  As part of the award CJ and Rob will have a solo exhibit in 2015 at the M. G. Nelson Family Gallery to highlight their unique artwork.

CJ's winning piece, Exemplara, is a wonderful fusion of drawings of nature and childhood memories with expressive ceramic forms.

When asked about her work, CJ responded, “My ceramic vessels contain altered meaning and memories, referencing themes of home and ritual.  The use of underglaze pencil allows for the tenuous link between perceived reality and nostalgia.”


Rob's winning piece, Split Composition, is a formidable structural piece of ceramic art that quickly captures one's attention.
When asked of his thought process when creating his piece, Rob Boryk responded, "In my work I attempt to create pieces that are complex but not complicated. In my compositions I utilized the way elements relate to one another create interest that engages the audience inviting them [to] explore the work."

Scott Ross won the First place award for his piece, Icarus.  Other prize winners included: Sarah Kandell-Gritzmaker, Paula Diaz-Sylvester, Carrie Gibbs, April Felipe, BJ Watson, Emily Franicola, Jeremy Brooks, Miriam Loory Krombach, and Jim Gottuso.



The “Shape of Influence | Contemporary Ceramics” exhibit is currently on display at the Springfield Art Association's (SAA) newly remodeled M. G. Nelson Family Gallery in Springfield, IL and online for purchase at the SAA’s Shop.  The exhibit opened Jul. 18th and continues through Sept. 6th; so make your travel plans before this show ends!

Tuesday, 19 August 2014

technical tuesday: Kelly Garrett Rathbone work in progress

I'm a huge fan of Kelly Garrett Rathbone's work, and was thrilled to stumble upon some inspiring in progress shots on her website. I hope you enjoy as much as I did.

Monday, 18 August 2014

monday morning eye candy: "Beauty and Natural Forces: Part II" by Sarah McNutt

 "Beauty and Natural Forces: Part II" by Sarah McNutt
Year: 2014
Location: Solana Beach
San Diego, CA
Materials: Unfired mold clay
Measurements 3' x 1' x 5' feet

Second work of a pair of sister pieces exploring the fleeting and controlling nature of the idea of beauty when subjected to natural forces. This work was handbuilt at San Diego State University, from unfiredable junk clay, and allowed to disintegrate over a few hours in the ocean. It is subjected to sun, waves, salt, and sand leading to it's ultimate destruction.