We asked the artists who had work accepted into this show a series of questions. Here are their answers.
In spring of 2019, I graduated from the University of Wisconsin-River Falls with a BFA in ceramics and drawing. After graduating, I promptly moved to Saint Paul, Minnesota to be a part of the thriving artist community of Minnesota and particularly the Twin Cities. Outside of ceramics I have a deep love for the outdoors and for music. I often go hiking and enjoy exploring new areas; one of my favorites in Kinnickinnic State Park in Wisconsin! One of my favorite things to in the cities is to go to concerts; a favorite concert of mine was seeing The Babe Rainbow opening for Allah-Las. Such a cohesive show!
I took my first ceramics class in 2012 when I was a freshman in high school. I have always been really into art, but taking this class was profound and since then, I went to school for ceramics and my live fully revolves around ceramics / pottery!
My work in primarily thrown and altered on the pottery wheel. My work is a direct conversation between form, firing, and self. I have been using a porcelaneous stoneware with a refractory flashing slip and blue celadon liner glaze; these are all things that I mix myself. My wares are fired in both wood kilns and soda kilns, but primarily soda kilns these days. I have been really interested in ceramic material research and down fire soda processes and recently received the Jerome Project Grant through the Jerome Foundation and Northern Clay Center to pursue this research.
My favorite piece is the footed pilsner. I have been really into making pieces with large extravagant feet. These emphasize and create drama within the form and for the fire.
Website: Casey Beck
Online Shop: Wood and Soda Fired Pottery by BeckPots
Instagram: @flacers casey beck (@beckpots) • Instagram photos and videos
Clay Akar in Iowa City, IA
Seasons on the St. Croix in Hudson, WI
Mainly Clay in Farmeville, VA
I have attached an image of my in the studio below and you should have an image of my footed tumbler. Please let me know if you have any other questions, or if there is anything else that I can do!
Born Los Angeles, CA. 1958.
Early experiences with clay as a child apparently left a mark. After school, apprenticeships, and more school, making pots was, is, and will continue to be a way of life. I’ve been a studio potter for nearly 40 years now, living and working in Arizona for much of that time. My work as a professional has always been low fire earthenware for many years and my Raku pots were shown nationally. The influences are scattered from the Southwest, Africa, and Japan to the cultures of the Mediterranean. A museum full of 2000-year-old pots in Rhodes was an epiphany.
Simple forms with no contrivance or pretension filled room after room. I hope to make one like that before I’m done. Seeing those pots 20 years ago started this current evolution. It began with soft muted colors, classic shapes, amphora, ewers, and jugs with an ancient feel. Then, textured pots with extravagant handles, spouts, and flourishes using brushed color. Over the last 7 years the current body of work has evolved. Hot colors, simple closed forms with very controlled textures dominate. High fire porcelain has now been added to the mix with its many eccentricities.
The last piece finished today, good, bad or indifferent is the product of doing the work for many years. These pieces can’t be made without those experiences, successes and failures, lots of failures. Every day in the studio is an adventure; I’m looking forward to working tomorrow.
Form is everything; I stretch clay to make canvases for decoration. Texture, pattern, and color are successful additions when the shapes are impeccable. My inspirations are many, from the classic forms of antiquity to the simple, graceful pots made by indigenous peoples and the work of modern studio potters. Dramatic color, subtle texture and graphic pattern accentuate what I hope is a mastery
of the traditional vessel form.
Thrown earthenware, with layers of textured slip, colored slips, and oxides.
Multiple gas or electric firings in oxidation to cone 03 or approximately 2000F.
Thrown porcelain or white stoneware with multiple glazes, fired in reduction to 2350F or Cone 10
Nicholas Bernard, 6234 N Cattle Track Rd., Scottsdale, AZ. 85250
Alejandro Botelho Alvarez
My name is Alejandro Botelho, I go by Alex. I grew up in Juneau, Alaska in the middle of the Tongass National Forest. Currently, I live in Bozeman, Montana as I finish my third year of my MFA program at Montana State University. Growing up in Southeast Alaska has strongly influenced my perspective of the world and my appreciation for nature. I am an avid climber, fisher, snowboarder, and aspiring cold-climate surfer. These activities inform my work because I am deeply inspired by a particular softness in nature. Even geology seems malleable when you watch and live in the fjords that glaciers have curved. My work is directly inspired by that softness
My first ceramics class was in middle school. I vaguely remember it, but it was enough to inspire me to later take a class as an elective at the University of Alaska Southeast. After that class I was hooked. At the time I was finishing an Associate’s Degree in cold-climate construction and loved building and using my hands to create practical and beautiful things. Since then, ceramics fulfills that need to create.
I am almost exclusively a wheel thrower. For me, like M.C Richards pottery is “Centering”. So much of modern life is filled with things I would describe as distractions. One of my professors called it the “buzz”. Wheel throwing turns off that buzz and allows me to be totally focused in the present. My studio practice is very particular; I have a Type-A personality however, you’d never know it looking at me and in the moment my studio can seem very haphazard. I think the best clay is my reclaim. Something about the mix of different clay bodies makes for a stronger constitution and also seems a little less pretentious than a single clay body. I use two clay bodies, a Helmar white-stoneware and a normal stoneware. I fire atmospherically to cone 10 in a wood-salt kiln and a gas-fired soda kiln.
This coffee mug is my favorite piece in the show. I love it because I find that the proportions of the handle attachment to the lip and the progressive thinning of the handle both accentuate the fluid qualities of the glaze over the form. There is a wonderful balance between matte and gloss across the body of the piece and a harmony between the earthy browns and the black and blues that evoke a nostalgia for northern skies.
I think the title of the show really got me. So much of what potters make revolves around libations- I wanted to join in on the celebration.
My work can be found at: @iambotelho on Instagram
After a very interesting career in the theater business, I retired starting my own pottery business called “My’s Pots” in my home in New Jersey. Moving to Charleston, SC eight years ago, I became a member of Cone 10 Studios until it’s close in 2019. I recently opened my own studio, Terrace Clay Studio, in the Riverland Terrace section of James Island, SC. My work has been shown in juried shows in New Jersey, New York, Georgia, Tennessee and Charleston, SC. I am currently showing in the 2020 Small Favors exhibit, at The Clay Studio in Philadelphia.
My first experience with clay was in a high school class, but I became hooked while taking a ceramics course in college, with a cute boyfriend I fell in love with both!
I am enamored with every type of ceramics, but my focus is on wheel thrown functional work. Over the years, I have worked in light and dark stoneware mid fire, low fire earthenware, raku, wood and soda firings, high fire reduction porcelain. At this time, I am focusing on cone 6 porcelain, in electric firings, using frit glazes, custom celadon glazes, and mixing with commercial glazes. Basically, I like trying all ceramic clays, glazes and firing processes.
These two cups are part of a series of cups in porcelain using a frit glaze and my favorites-
I applied to “Cheers!” because I’m a sucker for cup shows.
My work can be seen on FB at My’s Pots and on Instagram @myspots
I've been a part time potter for over 40 years. In my working career I had various positions in Information Technology for 31 years and made pottery as a hobby. It is still my part time hobby. I started with a Parks & Recreation course in 1975, then took courses at our local Arts Center, then eventually at CSU-Pueblo.
I always liked pottery but when I was young, I couldn't afford it, so I took my first class. I've learned a lot since then and continue to discover how much more there is to know. If I lived 300 years, I would still be discovering.
I use stoneware clay. In the past I worked primarily with iron-based clay, but now include white clay and sometimes porcelain. I fire to cone 10 in gas or wood with studio made glazes.
Mugs are my absolute favorite pot to make. They provide a lifelong connection between the artist and the person using the mug. Many times people have told me that they think of me when they use my mug for morning coffee. The specifics of the conversations vary, but the essence is that we maintain a personal connection long after I have given a mug as a gift. Mugs are personal, intimate, and utilitarian. We caress them, we sip liquids from them, we smell the aroma of the liquid they hold. Mugs are associated with activities that bring pleasure. I have given away hundreds to family, friends, neighbors, and random people like the mailman, landscaper, or electrician. In this show the beer mug (see photo below) is my favorite. I like the form, the surface texture, and the way the glaze feathered and interacted with the texture.
I am still a part time potter so quantity is not something I aspire to. The annual "Drinking Vessel" show is one of the few shows I entered. I use my pots as a way of giving back. Most of my work is given as personal gifts or to various local fund raisers.
I grew up in Kansas and now live in Alpine, Wyoming. I teach ceramics, drawing, and printmaking classes at the Art Association of Jackson Hole. Every day is different - I work as a studio potter and also as a sculptor and illustrator. Living near Jackson has brought interesting projects; one is making pottery for the restaurant at the White Buffalo Club. Working with a chef to design dishes is a dream come true.
My high school ceramics teacher was where it began, after a year of throwing on the wheel I was hooked. He recommended attending Kansas State University with Yoshi Ikeda, so that is what I did. However, I fell in love more with ceramic sculpture and that was the route I continued to pursue with an MFA at the University of Missouri-Columbia. Pottery has been a consistent in my life since high school; it is something that holds a lifetime of learning.
I prefer porcelain, although I work with stoneware when the need arises. A lot depends on the client and what finish they are looking for. When left to my own devices I prefer smooth porcelain. I use clay from the Archie Bray Foundation and decorate with commercial underglaze and cone 6 glazes that I make in my studio. In the past few years, I have been combining my love of drawing into the surface design of my pottery. The mugs in this show are the beginning of a new series; I drew on the bisque fired clay with an underglaze pencil.
My favorite piece from this grouping is “Measure twice, cut twice” It pretty much sums up my average day. Also, I really enjoy drawing random tools and objects; I love how awkward they look without context. When using an underglaze pencil, I have to just commit to the line, no erasing, and no going back over it – if the line is too thick it will run. Drawing these tools during the COVID-19 pandemic has made me laugh. I don’t know what tools we need to get through the day, but those awkward scissors have got to help.
A friend sent me the prospectus for this show; I thought it was interesting to have a show with vessels in categories specifically by drinks. I often imagine what my work would be used for, though I know that is rarely the case!
My blog entry on pieces from this series: https://www.dowdhousestudios.com/new-blog/2020/5/22/flat-foods-amp-helpful-objects
Facebook: @dowdhousestudios and @jennydowdartist
I am a full-time studio potter who loves travel, animals, theater, books, and food. In my spare time, I volunteer with a local animal rescue group, and I almost always have a foster animal or five running around the house, along with my resident menagerie. I grew up in Minnesota but have lived most of my adult life in Dallas, Texas... except for the two years that I spent living on an extremely rural island in Japan, where I spent my time eating things with tentacles, perfecting my Japanese language skills, and getting chased down by killer wild boars. I have spent ten years on cast at the local renaissance festival, and I was given free reign to accost people in the lanes with archaic English.
Almost all of my work is wheel-thrown and then altered. I use a porcelaneous stoneware because it offers the beautiful white canvas I need for my surfaces, but it still allows me to abuse the clay in ways that would make pure porcelain crack. These days, I almost always use Laguna's ^5 B-Mix without grog. I fire my work in an electric kiln because it's what's available to me now, and I usually use commercial glazes because I have neither the space for all the raw ingredients nor the will to spend time mixing them.
The photo below depicts my favorite. It's one of my newest pieces, and it shows my experiments with color. I previously added floral underglaze decals to my pots, but they were almost always just one color. Most recently, however, I have started painting translucent, colored glazes over the decals to add depth and more interest to the surface. This pot is one of the more successful experiments.
The juror, Justin Lambert, is a favorite artist of mine. It's an honor to have my pieces juried into the show by him. In addition, Commonwheel Artists Co-op has been extremely generous to me after there was a shipping error that was absolutely not their fault in any possible way. They did not have to treat me as well as they did, but the fact that they did has made me loyal to them forever!
I live on Instagram as @alleeceramics. In addition, I just opened an online shop on my website, www.alleeceramics.com. Finally, I will soon have some cups available at Charlie Cummings Gallery during their upcoming show, "Cup: The Intimate Object XVI."
Paige Furr is from Dallas, TX and has been working with ceramics for thirty years while teaching High School Ceramics, Sculpture, and 3D Studio Art. She followed her interest in clay to obtain her BFA in Ceramic Art at Alfred University in New York State. Following college, she returned to Texas and began her teaching career. Paige taught at Booker T. Washington High School for the Performing and Visual Arts for 20 years before moving to the Greenhill School. She creates her own work at her home studio using the potter’s wheel and hand building technique including slab and press molds.
I first became interested in ceramics while admiring a close friend’s Japanese Dragon roof tile his mother had acquired. When I began taking a ceramics class in High School and first touched clay, I knew this was my medium. I quickly took to the wheel and would dream of throwing techniques at night prior to actually performing the tasks. I attended college at the New York State College of Ceramics and have been actively working with clay ever since. I have worked sculpturally in clay, created architectural ceramic installations, and built plant inspired sculptures with thrown and altered forms. However, my main focus and draw is in the container form, taking visual and artistic ques from the idea of function while utilizing the wheel as a creation tool.
Throughout my teaching career I have always desired to have a studio at home where I can work uninterrupted from teaching. In December 2018, my husband and I moved our tools into the new studio and while carrying my first bag of clay into the studio, I tripped over the claw of a 14-foot scorpion sculpture. Upon landing, I broke my left hand leaving an imprint on the bag of clay I was carrying. Not to be discouraged, I was determined to create despite my new handicap. I found that I could hand build with the cast on my arm and a new direction in my work developed. I created press molds of interesting textures, hardware like nuts, bolts and screws, and design elements to imprint a mechanically inspired surrealism into my new work.
I prefer to work with mid-range stoneware and I currently fire my work in electric kilns. When I have the luxury of firing with gas, reduction is my preferred method. Currently, I am overlapping and spraying glazes to achieve a depth and richness of surface and color. All of my glazes, save the gold luster, are house-made composed of recipes collected and developed throughout my ceramics career.
I was inspired to apply to this exhibit after a trip to Colorado Springs three years ago with my husband, John whose Aunt (a professional jeweler) suggested that we take a day trip to Manitou Springs, especially Commonwheel Artists Co-Op. While there I admired the Cheers! Drink Up! Exhibit and thought, “Hey, I could have some fun with that!”. I am honored and delighted to be invited to this exhibit.
My favorite pieces for the exhibit are the Steampunk Trophy Shot Glasses. This pair was inadvertently inspired by cardboard pre-Columbian mask sculptures I assigned to my 6th graders to create in class. These pieces were intended to be awards (trophies) for a fund-raiser in Dallas; however, the COVID 19 pandemic erupted, and I had more time to complete the pieces, adding whimsical elements and personifying each piece.
My husband, John and I created our company, ”FurrRader Workshop”, over my spring break just prior to the COVID-19 shut-down of Spring 2020. Plans are for a website to be completed this summer and my work can currently be seen on Instagram @furrrader_workshop_ceramics.
Paige Furr at work in the FurrRader Workshop
John is a full time ceramic artist and ceramics instructor at The Arvada Center, residing in Arvada CO. His work is inspired by science fiction, pop culture, cartoons, and comic books. John was born and raised in the Widefield area in Colorado Springs. In high school he was moved to a rural town in Kansas and decided to stay after graduating to pursue a college career where he met his wife and graduated from Fort Hays State University with Bachelors in Fine Arts and a second degree in education. He and his wife Mary have two daughters, two dogs and a cat.
Initially, John discovered clay in high school. He took to the wheel and enjoyed it but found more interest at the time with sculpting. When he took an elective pottery class while attending Jr. College, he was inspired by his instructor, Jeannie Quinns way of working with clay and decided to pursue becoming a full-time artist.
John works in mid-range oxidation firing. His color pallet is simple using a mixture of studio made glaze and commercial underglazes. He prefers majorly wheel throwing for his functional work, but also uses the slip cast process for his Rocket ship Shot glasses and hand builds "non-conventional " handles using extruders, and sprig molds to create a mechanical aesthetic.
The mugs that are in the show have been Johns favorite pieces. These were a breakthrough, during the beginning of The COVID stay at home order, as This was the push he needed to move his entire body of work from the gas kilns where he works to his home studio. His cups were typically fired in cone 10 reduction, at the Arvada Center, and he has been trying to find a cup that caught his eye from the oxidation firing as the reduction atmosphere does.
John feels that this show provides great exposure and his work seems to be welcomed by the viewers. He was surprised that the pieces submitted for the 2019 show all sold and was happy to apply again.
John’s work is represented by Plinth Gallery in Denver, CO at 3520 Brighton Blvd, Denver, CO 80216
instagram and facebook: @johnrhamilton3ceramics
I grew up in Columbus, Ohio, went to high school in Denver, CO, finishing my senior year in Lancaster, PA. I have a BS from Penn State and an MBA from UCCS. After college I joined the Peace Corps and served in Morocco for two years where I met my husband. I spent 5 years in the corporate world and then worked for another 30 years in the Non-profit sector. We have lived in the Springs for 26 years, moving here as my husband was a civilian professor at the USAFA. We have one adult son. I retired ten years ago. We travel internationally when we can.
In elementary school we were given a very small chuck of clay to make a pinch pot which was fired and returned to us (see below). I clearly remember thinking that little piece of clay was not enough, I really wanted more and someday I was going to play with this stuff big time! I purchased lots of pottery in Morocco. After retiring I began taking classes here and there and finally bought my own wheel and kiln and took over our basement! So yes, arts in school, no matter how small can make a difference! Especially for a left brainer!
I am a hobby potter, working a few hours a day or a couple days a week. I also have taught throwing at the USAFA studio. I love throwing on a wheel, feeling the clay and forming it into a piece people will touch, use, and enjoy both visually and functionally. Thus, I mostly make pieces that can be used every day like mugs, juicers, tableware, serving pieces etc., although, I also enjoy making leaf bowls by hand, the bigger the leaf the better! I prefer porcelain for throwing and bmix for hand-building. I fire in oxidation in a Skutt kiln, generally to cone 6. I purchase my glazes from a variety of sources and almost always brush on my glazes on cone 04 bisque. I do not have a particular “style.” Rather, I like to constantly experiment with looks and techniques.
My favorite piece accepted into this event is my chocolate martini vessel. I had a lot of fun with those glazes.
I applied for “Cheers!” because I like challenges, and I had never made anything but mugs as a drinking vessel so I wanted to try something different!
Besides donating pieces to silent auctions, soup bowl events etc., I mostly sell to family and friends at an annual sale in my home. Making is more important than selling for me! When my Facebook page is cooperating (Created in Clay), I show photos there, as well as on my Instagram page, Claymadam.
My work is wood- or gas- fired high temperature stoneware and porcelain. My inspiration comes from the Colorado landscape and contemporary dance. The intention is not to imitate nature or movement, but to express the elemental power, the mystery or the delicacy of the landscape and dance through forms in clay. More of my work can be found on my website: vickyhansenwoodfirewoman.com. I am one of the founding potters who organized this annual exhibition and am honored to participate and continue to see the exhibition flourish at Commonwheel Gallery in Manitou Springs. My favorite piece is the wood fired mug with the green runny glaze.
I am a full-time educator of graphic design at the Ringling College of Art and Design in Sarasota, Florida. I have a small studio in my back yard where I make ceramic art, screen print and print on a 100-year-old letterpress. I strive to integrate methods and processes in my practice.
My introduction to clay happened by accident! When I applied to Penland School of Crafts, they only had two open classes. One was temporary tattooing and the other was surreal slip casting taught by Laura Jean McLaughlin. I fell in love with clay there. She was a great influence on my thinking and process.
The “Monkey Shots” are part of a recent exploration in 3d modeling, mold making, and slip casting. The clay I used was Laguna porcelain slip. I use an electric kiln that is small enough to fit into my studio.
Any large pieces are assembled afterword. A commercial food safe clear glaze has been applied to the monkey shots.
The monkey shots needed a place to be seen with an appropriate theme. This was perfect place for their introduction to people.
My ceramic work is online at: http://www.pollyjohnson.studio. Process can be seen on https://www.instagram.com/pollyjohnson.studio/
My name is James Kelly and I live in Denver Colorado. I moved to Colorado in 2001 after graduating from college in Michigan. My interests outside of ceramics include typical things a Coloradan might enjoy like snowboarding, cross-country skiing, hiking, and camping. In 2011 I met my incredible wife Angie and we were married in 2013. We’ve since bought a home and I’ve converted the garage into my studio.
I first got interested in pottery in high school. We had a great fully functioning ceramics studio with a gas kiln, and I took as many classes as they would allow. I then received my BFA in ceramics from Northern Michigan University in 2001, studying under Sam Chung who is now an internationally-known ceramic artist and educator at Arizona State University. From there I attended University of Minnesota for one semester as an independent study working under Mark Pharis. Once leaving there I needed a change and moved to Denver on a whim with several friends from college. Ten years past and I found myself working and enjoying life in Colorado, but I was missing my connection with clay. In 2010 I was accepted into the Colorado Potters Guild where I’m able to glaze and fire my work.
My work is a combination of wheel thrown, hand built, press, and slump-molded parts. I primarily work with high fire porcelain although I’ve been playing around with a very iron rich stoneware as well. All work is fired to cone 10 in a soda kiln. I use glazes we make at the Potters Guild which consist of a variety of glazes and flashing slips that I apply by spraying over each other.
I really like this new handle design of this Mod Mug in combination with the new clay body a very iron rich gritty stoneware. This piece represents some new processes, materials, and ideas for me.
I was in the show last year and wanted to be a part of another Colorado show.
My work can be found at the Museum Store at The Kirkland Museum of Fine and Decorative Art, online at my etsy page www.etsy.com/shop/REDBEARDstudio, or my most current way is my Instagram account @redbeardceramics, I also participate in the Colorado Potters Guilds biannual sales (cancelled for 2020)
I received my BFA focused in ceramics from SIU at Carbondale in 2009. That was followed by a 2 year residency at Terra Incognito in the Chicago area and then a yearlong MA program from EIU. In 2015 I headed out west and was a studio tech and resident artist at the Mendocino Art Center which was where I really got into wood firing. Currently, I am in Missoula, Montana and in the beginning stages of opening a ceramic studio, Wildfire Ceramic Studio, with four others.
I always knew I wanted to do something with the arts. I was obtaining my Associates of Art from Illinois Central College and had one more art elective left. I knew nothing about ceramics but walked past the ceramic classroom every day. It was the first classroom in the art wing. I decided to take a ceramic class for my last elective and fell in love instantly. It was the best choice I ever made! I ended up taking a summer class and heard SIUC had a good ceramic program so decided to go there for my BFA.
My favorite piece for this show is probably the beer tumbler. It's a simple form, but one I hadn't made for a very long time due to the technique I use to create my surface. I often need to push out from the inside to open up the texture a bit and strayed away from straight edge forms. I was commissioned to make some tumblers so just went for it. I think it worked out still, so it has opened me up to more forms to choose from. I also feel the surface from the wood kiln we fired in came out really nice on this piece as well, there's a lot of variety all the way around.
Being a functional potter, the majority of my work is drinking vessels. They're the easiest thing for me to experiment with and, at this stage in my career, I have the best market for them. I'm always seeking out cup shows. I really liked how this show had separate categories. I had the show on my radar for a while and didn't even realize Justin Lambert was the juror until right when I started getting things ready to apply. Being a wood fire potter, I'm a big fan of his work.
Right now the best place to find me would be instagram for viewing work @brucekittsceramics. Etsy is the best place for online purchases, that's also at brucekittsceramics. I have work in the gallery at the Clay Studio of Missoula. You can also check out Wildfireceramicstudio.com to check out the new up and coming ceramic studio we are currently building.
I earned my BFA from the University of Wisconsin-River Falls in 2013 with a major in ceramics and a minor in painting. Two years ago, I relocated from Minnesota to Providence, RI to start my residency at The Steel Yard. This residency allowed me to develop techniques and skills to explore new ideas, colors, and patterns while also boosting my skills working with metals. My ceramic work has been in galleries and art shows across the nation and even made a couple of appearances in Ceramics Monthly. When not working in the studio, you can find me exploring the outdoors, hanging out with my circus cat, or crafting something handy for the home.
I loved painting and drawing as a kid, but I never took a pottery class until my last year in high school. It was my teacher that ignited my love for clay and throwing on the wheel. Probably only a few weeks into class was when I decided it was what I should go to college for and study.
I use a mid-range commercial porcelain and fire my work in an electric kiln to cone 6. While I use commercial clay, I do mix my own clear and liner glaze. I wedge mason stains into the porcelain for the colored handles and cup nubbins. For my decorations, I hand carve the pattern into clay using an Xacto knife and inlay underglaze into the design.
My favorite piece I submitted that was accepted is the mug with blue diagonal lines and a black handle. I just love how the blue underglaze blends together in this pattern! (And the handle is super comfy.)
I was inspired to apply for “Cheers! Drink Up!” because I participated in 2019 and it was such a wonderful show! I am very happy to have my work accepted again this year.
You can find my work online at www.BriLarson.com, on Instragam at @BriLarsonArt and Facebook at /BriLarsonArt. If you are ever in downtown Providence, RI you can also find my work at Craftland (Instagram @Craftland).
Hello everyone, my name is Brandon Lipe. I was born in North Dakota and primarily raised in Southern California. I received my BFA from Cal State Fullerton, and then went on to get my MFA in ceramics from Edinboro University of Pennsylvania. I am currently the resident artist and instructor at the Art Center West in Roswell, Ga.
I started out going to college for graphic design, but after blending in and not really enjoying it, I started thinking about changing majors. I took a ceramics class as an elective and was instantly hooked. Once I started skipping graphic design classes to go to open studio hours in ceramics, I knew I had to change majors.
All of my work is made on the wheel at the moment. I tend to make simple forms that I later alter to give them movement and asymmetry. I use Standards 182 clay and predominantly soda fire, with the occasional wood fire a couple times a year. I make all my glazes so I can achieve specific effects in the soda kiln. The glazes are usually satin matte, so they feel nice to the touch and when hit with soda turn glossy. This asymmetry in glaze emphasizes the form and movement.
My favorite piece in the show is the gray mug. I really like how the glaze reacted to the soda and complimented the form.
I make work that is intended to be used on a daily basis, so a show based on drinking vessels was right up my ally.
You can find my work on my website brandonlipeceramics.com and my instagram @b.lipe_ceramics
My name is Jennifer Lowell. I live west outside of Denver and I teach K-6 Art at a Montessori School within Denver Public Schools.
I learned to throw on the wheel from a master potter in Algeciras, Spain where my husband is from. I was enchanted from the first second I felt the Clay spinning in my hands. I like to throw a variety of sizes and particularly love to throw miniature tea-sets off the hump. I work full time as a teacher so I have had the privilege to explore Clay without having to sell my ceramics, which means I can donate, gift, and apply to shows which can stretch my imagination according to their themes. My work is inspired by nature about 99% of the time. The installations I have created have also been within an environmental framework. Clouds, swallows, flora, and a menagerie of animals can be found in my work. I am delighted with just about every Clay body out there! I enjoy wood and soda firings. When not embellishing my work with drawings or carvings I love a Shino or Tenmoku glazing.
This little Fox Mug is a stoneware Clay body with some stains and a blue rutile liner glaze. I was inspired to enter the show as it was in a lovely nearby setting and I do create a lot of drinking Vessels.
I am currently working on a website. Up until March 2020, I was showing my work at the Copper Moon Gallery in Taos.
I was born and raised in Lexington, Kentucky. I received my B.A. in Studio Art with an emphasis in Ceramics from the University of Kentucky in 2010. I received a Master of Fine Arts from the University of Mississippi in May 2020. Inspired by my upbringing surrounded by art that blurred the lines between utility and personal expression, I am committed to the utilitarian ceramic vessel. My pots explore the visual intersection of human intention and serendipitous beauty. I hope that my work offers users a point of connection: to food and to object, to self and to others.
Pottery was always around and part of my consciousness as a kid. A good family friend owned and operated a pottery business in Florida. Another family friend taught ceramics in a rural Kentucky high school. My dad is also a craftsperson--a woodworker. So, it was just always around, and this notion of making useful things with your hands was just a part of my value structure. When I took my first ceramics course in undergrad it just clicked instantly. I thought to myself “Oh, this is it. This is what I’m going to do.”
I fire all my work to cone 10 in a gas-reduction kiln. Being at a research 1 institution, I am fortunate to be able to formulate and mix all my glazes and claybodies from raw materials. I prefer to use a dark stoneware clay because of its exceptional workability and its pleasantly toothy appearance.
I’m fond of all the mugs I submitted to this show, as they were all in my MFA thesis exhibition, but I guess I am most proud of this mug:
Formally, it has everything I want my pots to have--gesture, movement, structure, and volume.
The Juror for this year’s show, Justin Lambert, is my friend and mentor. I’ve never had the opportunity to submit my work to him for a juried exhibition. It was exciting, but also a bit nerve-wracking!
Where can we find your work: website, social media, local galleries.
My name is Esther Mech, and I am a half-Korean potter living and working in Watkinsville, Georgia. Originally from Maryland, I received my BA from Wesleyan College in 2016, and my MFA from the University of Georgia in 2019. My days are spent making pots, teaching people how to make pots, and keeping my cats off of my wheel and out of the reclaim buckets.
Initially in college I was a pre-dental student, and my advisor recommended that I take a sculpture class. The unit on clay caught my attention, so I signed up for a ceramics class that summer and rarely left the studio after that point.
Generally I prefer a warm stoneware body with some tooth, but I also enjoy using porcelain since it takes the water-etching process so well.
While most of my work is wheel-thrown, I have been making pinch pots more regularly in the past year. I use a mason stain-based drawing medium for the illustrations on my work, most of which are drawn from historic Korean paintings and ceramics. The glazes I use are made in the studio, primarily celadons and shino-type glazes.
The local wood-firing crew I work with here in Georgia makes it possible for me to fire regularly in an anagama, a wood-salt kiln, and a wood-soda kiln. In addition to the distinctive surfaces that can be obtained through atmospheric kilns, I love the process of labor inherent to these firings and the community bonds that are formed.
My favorite piece accepted for this show is the pinched mug with tenmoku glaze, simply because it is the mug that is most comfortable for me personally to use.
Justin Lambert posted about the call for entry on Instagram, and as a potter who has been fixated on mugs, applying to “Cheers!” felt like a good fit.
My website is esthermech.com, and my Instagram page can be found @elmclay
Making and teaching in the mountains of Southern New Mexico, Courtney is currently the Assistant Professor of Ceramics at Western New Mexico University. She obtained her Master of Fine Arts degree from Pennsylvania State University and her Bachelor of Fine Arts degree from the NYSCC at Alfred University.
I've always been drawn to art making since I was a child. I grew up with parents that fostered creativity and a sister who is an artist also. Coming from a farming community in the Finger Lakes Region of New York State, I've always been drawn to work that is physical and connected to nature. Pottery has an incredible ability to impact people visually and tactically, entering people's homes and becoming part of their world. Creating these objects is constantly challenging and rewarding.
I have a passion for ceramic chemistry and need control over my clay and glazes to create a wider color palette at a high temperature. I make my own materials and work in high fire porcelain firing in oxidation and reduction.
Blue Mug is my favorite piece for this show. It has a soft exterior glaze accentuates the minimal lines incised on the exterior of the mug. It's a perfect size to keep your coffee warm all morning inviting refills.
The art culture in Colorado is well supported and has a long history of cultivating spaces for people to make and enjoy the arts. Participating in this show is an honor.
I'm a retired art teacher with 34 years of experience. I've taught all grade levels in public school as well as some college level classes. I hold a master's degree in Art and a bachelor's degree in Art Education.
My senior year in undergraduate school I took my first ceramic course. The minute I saw my teacher "throw a pot" I was hooked. I knew from that moment on my hands would touch clay as long as I lived!
I like to make functional yet decorative pieces. I use a buff clay, fire to cone 6 in an electric kiln. I've always been a cone 6 guy! Since I think of my pieces as a 3D canvas, I try to apply lots of stains via an airbrush. I multiple fire some pieces to achieve certain effects. I've mixed all my glazes from day one.
"Dang Pigeon" is my favorite accepted piece. I like the way the various application techniques work together. I really like the way the quickly applied white stain interacts with the background colors as it moves your eye!
I like " MUG" competitions! Your upfront info on this event was very easy to follow. I was also reaching out geographically as far as I could to see if I could compete!
My work can be seen/found on my website ( jimmitchell.wixsite.com/makepots), Pinterest; Plough Gallery, Tifton,Ga.; Adams Drug Store, Cordele,Ga.; and in various art fairs in a 100 mile radius of my home.
I started working with clay in high-school and college but took a long hiatus from it to explore other opportunities. I think I just wasn’t a part of the right artistic community at the time to go all-in. In 2017, the right combination of factors made me really want to fully give myself to the technical and creative process and get my hands back into clay, the most important factor being my exposure to wood firing. It hooked me pretty good and is essential to my process and makes working with clay that much more rewarding. I love the community aspect of wood firing, the aesthetic, working outdoors with my hands, wood processing, the intense and emotional journey during a firing, and the serendipity and at times randomness of the results. I’m interested in using a number of different and sometimes untested clay bodies and shino glazes to get a spectrum of contrasting results in a single firing.
My guinomi that was accepted into this show was fired for seven days in the Flynn Creek Anagama at Nick Schwartz’s studio in Comptche, California. I really like the way this clay body fired in Nick’s kiln. It is a stoneware made by Laguna Clay called Sonoran White, hence the name of the piece “Sono Ran Guinomi”.
I was mainly interested in this show because it was being juried by Justin Lambert. I was a little familiar with his work and knew he was a woodfire guy, so the fact that he was involved was an attraction. I also think cup shows are really cool!
You can follow me on Instagram: @head.road.puddles
Fox Nicely is a potter native to Northeast Ohio. He has spent the past six years pursuing his love of functional pottery and honing his skills with the traditional processes used to make it. During his time at the Cleveland Institute of Art, Fox developed an interest in the process of wood-firing pottery and has since become an active member in Cleveland’s wood-fire community. After graduating with a BFA in ceramics in 2018, Fox has worked on the staff as Watershed Center for the Ceramic Arts in Newcastle, ME, and he currently lives in Painesville, OH while making work at BRICK Ceramic +Design Studio.
I took my first ceramics class during my senior year of high school. I found the challenge of developing technical skill with such a dynamic material to be very rewarding. Ultimately, when I got a work study job at the Cleveland Institute of Art, I realized how much there was to learn in the field of ceramics and I never looked back.
I work almost exclusively with atmospheric kilns (wood, soda, salt). I find that I am so drawn to the innate and dynamic surfaces that develop in those firings; the constant challenge of nailing down a specific surface and the constant discovery of new ones. To best capture that surface, I tend to work with white or light firing clay bodies and for the same reasons that I enjoy the challenges of atmospheric firings, I love to experiment with my own clay and glaze recipes.
My favorite piece in this exhibition is probably the Rocks Cup. I say that because it was so intentionally atmospheric in how it was finished. Wadding the cup on its side is a great way of taking what can often be one of the most boring and tedious parts of loading atmospheric firings, and turning it into an intentional aesthetic decision that allows for the dynamic nature of the firing to be shown full-force on a more visible part of the cup. Additionally, the black-blue slip on the outside of the cup is formulated specifically for atmospheric firings. The colorants in the slip are concentrated enough that in a ‘dry’ firing the slip would turn a semi-matte black. However, when the added flux is introduced to the surface in a soda firing, the colorants are diluted in the resulting glaze to produce the blue-to-black variation.
As a functional maker, I find that cups are some of the most rewarding objects to make, because of that; I’m always on the lookout for shows to exhibit some of my favorite forms. Additionally, for a young maker the thought of showing my work halfway across the country is pretty exciting!
My work can be found on my Instagram: @foxnicely, on my Etsy page: https://www.etsy.com/shop/FoxNicely, as well as a local gallery, River Gallery in Rocky River, Ohio
My name is Carter Pasma I'm 24 years old. I received my BFA with a concentration in ceramics from the University of Wisconsin-Stout in 2019. I'm currently a post back at Montana State University in their ceramics program studying under Josh DeWeese and Jeremy Hatch. I make wheel thrown functional pottery that is influenced by the natural occurrences around me such as snowdrifts, waves and the hard ledges and edges of mountainous terrain, translated through the porcelain slip and rib lines I use on my pots. My pots are primarily atmospherically fired in either wood, soda, or a combination of the two to cone 10. I enjoy the "magic" that can happen in the different atmospheres of these kilns causing the pots to have more variation and surface complexity. I usually work in porcelain or stoneware and have been experimenting with different kaolin slips for flashing. All of my glazes are studio made glazes that I have formulated and are primarily wood ash glazes. I enjoy the life cycle that these glazes go through to actually become a glaze, it's a lot like the cycle of clay becoming a pot. First Starting as a tree, then being chopped down and burned to make the ash itself. Then processing that ash into a workable material and finally firing it to nearly 2300 degrees to create the glaze. When I'm not making pots I'm usually outside hiking, mountain biking, fly fishing or snowboarding depending on the season.
I got into pottery my junior year of high school. I heard the teacher Mr. Lou, was a really cool guy so I decided I would take his class. He was a really awesome guy, but he also had an assignment that if you threw a seven-inch cylinder at any time throughout the class you would get an A in the class. So, I decided I was going to go on the wheel every day until I threw that cylinder. In the first week of school on Friday I threw the seven-inch cylinder and I was in love. I started skipping other classes, lunch and staying after school to make pots and hangout in the ceramics room. I knew from that moment that making pottery is what I want to do for the rest of my life.
My favorite piece that got into the show is a porcelain tumbler that was woodfired and reduction cooled. It has some great flashing from being side wadded and has a very complex ashy surface with oranges, blues, grays, and blacks.
I applied for this show because I am trying to diversify my resume as well as get my work out into the world to be experienced by others.
My Instagram is @cartersclay
I began working with clay in high school and the studio became my hideaway haven. I never imagined it would become my life’s work and passion, but little by little, ceramics became a bigger piece of my life. After all these years, I continue to find great joy, peace, excitement, and challenge in the studio. I am always learning, always growing with my work.
I have lived in Somerville MA, just outside Boston, since earning my MFA from U-Mass-Dartmouth’s Program in Artisanry. My studio is in my home, so I can spend a significant amount time to do my work. I like to rotate my focus and will create a series of small cups and bowls, and then move to working on tiles or large wall pieces. All my work is made with thick slabs and coils and then carved. The carving incorporates the design of the piece into the shape, or form of the piece. The decoration is not just sitting on top of the surface, it is integral. By building in different sizes and going from tabletop pieces to wall work, I see them from many vantage points. Each series sparks new ideas, influencing the next.
The balance of my time is devoted to teaching. I teach adult classes at Mudflat Pottery School, which is the home of my clay community. I have also worked as an artist-in-residence at several local high schools. These residencies are funded by the Massachusetts Cultural Council. Each year I design new projects and work with the students to create large scale murals for their school. I love teaching. I get to share my passion, while also learning from the experience and my students!
I build my work with soft, wet clay, in sets of 4 to 6 pieces at a time. I do this so the pieces can dry, as I move from one to the next. I begin with very wet clay, so I can stretch it, as I carve. As the clay dries and stiffens, the carving becomes more refined and I can get greater detail. My clay recipe is a dark brown earthenware. It is designed to be strong and plastic/flexible, to accommodate my carving. I order it by the ton!
Once the work is bisque fired, I paint on the glazes. I mix most of my glazes and am regularly trying out new recipes, looking for new textures and colors. I use a few commercial glazes on the inside of my functional work. The work is fired in electric kilns, powered by solar panels, to cone 02.
I am very fond of the whiskey and martini cups included in the CHEERS show. They are tiny sculptures designed to fit comfortably in your hand. The feel of a cup is as important to me, as its look. These cups can make a cocktail a bit more fun. I am very pleased to be able to share them with the Manitou Springs community! Covid-19 has closed all of my local sales outlets and given me the time to look for new opportunities for my work. During “normal” times, I sell and show my work at local craft galleries and during Open Studio events in my home.
You can find it at Mudflat Gallery, Cambridge, MA, Cambridge Artist Coop, Cambridge, MA and Local Pottery, Norwell, MA. My website is juliepeckceramics.com. I am very happy to do direct sales and commissions.
Julie Peck, Somerville, MA 02144
I moved to Tenino, WA about a year ago to begin establishing my pottery business. I have had some formal training as an intern and apprentice at wood firing potteries in Wisconsin and North Carolina. My aspiration is to create a unique pottery which combines the approaches I have learned in different parts of the country. When I am not working with clay I enjoy tending to my garden and cooking up tasty food!
I have always enjoying making things from clay, but I developed a passion for throwing pottery in high school. Later, I visited professional potters and ceramic artists to see their different methods of production and approaches to making a career as an artist.
I am currently making glazed and slip decorated work which is fired in an electric kiln to cone 6. I like all types of clay but have been working mostly with dark stoneware clay. I mix all the glazes and slips used in my studio.
My favorite piece accepted for this event is the yunomi (tea category). It features a combination of dark slip and matte white glaze. I like how the white glaze has a lovely satin finish but still allows the slip decoration, and clay textures underneath to show.
I was inspired to apply for this show because I enjoy tailoring vessels to a specific purpose. I welcome the challenge of considering how form, function, and aesthetics interact to create a piece which is suited for regular use, provides tactile comfort, and elicits visual intrigue.
You can see my work on Facebook and Instagram @alanperillopottery, and find it for sale at www.perillopottery.com. I have tableware available for sale at KOBOSeattle
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