Pictorial: My Mentors


From the top, in reverse chronology: 2001-present, Artist-in-Residency and teaching at the Worcester Center for Crafts with Tom O’Malley. 1998-2001: Graduate school at Ohio University with Brad Schwieger, Joe Bova, Chuck McWeeny, Boomer Moore, and Vince Burke. 1997-98 Artist-in-Residency at the Arrowmont School of Arts & Crafts with Pete Pinnell and Bill Griffith. 1996-97: Artist-in-Residency/Assistant at Plum Tree Pottery with John Glick. 1995-96: Internship at Greenfield Village at the Henry Ford Museum with Bryan Van Benschoten. 1993-95: Undergraduate school at the N.Y.S.C.C. at Alfred University with John Gill, Andrea Gill, Val Cushing, and Steve Rolf. 1991-93: Associate degree at Montgomery College, Rockville with Bob Devers, Don Montano, and Kevin Hluch.

For me, mentors are artists/ aesthetic coaches/ professors/ advisers/ career counsellors who I worked with for a couple days to several years; who offered me crucial support, guidance, and constructive criticism; and who influenced me as a maker, full-time artist, and instructor. I could spend pages posting quotes and sharing how each of these artists helped me ‘in the moment’ and over the years, but for now I thought it would be nice to pay a pictorial tribute. (I’ll have to do another post of peers, friends, and loved ones who I also consider big influencers, trouble-shooters, and butt-kickers.) Ironically, I don’t believe that what an artist makes can offer any real clues into how they teach and critique, but I’m lucky that I’ve had such an amazing collection of thoughtfully talented givers help me who are equally talented makers. I’m fortunate, and very appreciative.

Ceramic Surface Forum 2012


These are the twenty great artists I spent the first week of 2012 with at the Arrowmont School of Arts and Crafts (where I was an artist-in-residence 15 years ago!) for a Ceramic Surface Forum. Jason Burnett brought us all together to spend five days making, conversing and laughing (lots of laughing) side-by-side in the studio. It was a wonderful way to start the New Year. Thanks to everyone for a fun and inspiring week! Hover your cursor over each image to see its maker, and see the full list of artists in our group below.


Ceramic Surface Forum 2012: Amy Santoferraro, Martina Lantin, Kathy King, Julie Guyot, Andy Sloan Jackson, Chris Pickett, Justin Rothshank, Meredith Host, Magda Gluscek, Susan Feagin, Mark Errol, Matt Nolen, Jason Bigge Burnett, Pattie Chalmers, Chandra DeBuse, Tom Bartel, Kurt Anderson, Dustin Farnsworth, Ronan Kyle Peterson, Phil Haralam and me. Yay!

Guest Post ~ Oribe & Influence


Fellow potter and blogger Ben Carter asked me to write a guest blog post for a new series he’s calling Turning Points, “where artists discuss the effect historical ceramics has had on their studio life.” I don’t post as often as I’d like on my own blog because my thoughts don’t flow as easily as a line of slip-trail, so it was fun to have a writing assignment about specific pots I enjoy, and how objects of influence inform my work. Check out my blog post here, and the latest from Ben and his studio in China by following his blog here! ~Thanks, Ben!

Tea set by Ben Carter

Handmade for Japan


Pictured, donated work by: Beth Lo, Diana Fayt, Hiroe Hanazono, Michael Connelly, Akio Takamori, Matt Kelleher, Shoko Teruyama, Julie Crosby and Kensuke Yamada.

UPDATE! Through the seriously hard work by the three organizers and bidding generosity by many, Handmade for Japan raised over $75,000 in three days from the eBay auction! Direct donations can still be made here. Congratulations and thank you to all!

Potters and fellow artists are rallying to raise money to assist victims of Japan’s catastrophic events of last week, and ongoing problems and efforts in recovery. Please help this cause by spreading the word & bidding on the amazing work donated by more than fifty artists. The eBay auction begins at 8 pm EST, Thursday March 24th and continues through 8 pm EST, Sunday March 27th right HERE.

They have been overwhelmed with donation offers, and now only need help spreading the word and having lots of bidders for all the great donated work. Become a fan of their Facebook page HERE and follow them on Twitter HERE to keep up on the details and news. Previews of the auction items will be available in English and Japanese through their Facebook page and Twitter updates.

Handmade For Japan’s mission is to raise money (hoping for 25K) through an online auction for relief efforts to assist the victims of Japan’s catastrophic earthquake, tsunami, and nuclear emissions.

Handmade for Japan is an online auction of unique, handmade art donated by concerned, invited artists and organized by (only!) three concerned artists, including Ayumi Horie, the project’s instigator. One hundred percent of all net proceeds collected via the auction will be donated to Global Giving’s Japan Earthquake And Tsunami Relief Fund.

This little house vase/flower brick is my contribution for the auction. Please show up on eBay this Th-Sun and bid on great work by caring artists to help needing people.


Autumn at Ayumi’s

The leaves are changing up here in the northeast, so it must be time for Ayumi Horie’s Studio Sale 2010!  I’m delighted to be the guest artist at her home studio in the Hudson Valley of Upstate New York on Columbus Day Weekend, October 9th and 10th, 10 -5 each day.  Visit her website homepage HERE for directions to plan your trip!

We hope you will make a weekend of it and bring your family and friends to leaf peep and pot shop for what will surely be a fun event on a beautiful autumn weekend.

Understandably, many of you are not actually in the northeast, but please feel free to post on Facebook, Tweet or blog this message to share with those you know in the area who appreciate pots.  Both Ayumi and I will be posting work for sale online in our respective stores after the event, so those of you who can’t make it get to shop too.

There are a handful of potters in our generation who have made great contributions to the field and community of ceramics in addition to being great makers, and Ayumi is one of them with her joyful pots and groundbreaking strategies connecting the importance of handmade to a new audience.

Come check us out the weekend after next!

Chicago! Chicago!

♫”…that toddlin’ town…” ♪

I’m on my way to Chicago!  Well, close.  This Wednesday and Thursday (9/22-23), I will be teaching a two-day workshop at Waubonsee Community College in Sugar Grove, IL.
I will then be participating in the Fall Pottery Sale at Steven Hill’s gallery and studio, Center Street Clay, in Sandwich, IL on Saturday and Sunday (9/25-26).  I sent 45 pieces for this show including the lovely, large jar on the poster.  If you are even remotely in the region for either or both events, I’d love to see you!