Thursday, March 27, 2008

Pottery and knick-knacks?

In the taxi on the way to the Pittsburgh airport on Saturday morning our driver asked if we were in town with all the ceramics people. We said yes and he asked "what do you make: pottery or knick-knacks?" Isn't that a great question?

I made a promise to myself many years ago that I would make a commitment to continually further my ceramic education. This is done in a couple of ways: attending workshops, reading all clay focused books, magazine (& blogs!) I can get my hands on, and go to NCECA every year. I do pretty well with this commitment and have managed to get to all but one conference in recent memory.

NCECA is usually held in a smaller city: Pittsburgh, Louisville, Portland, Baltimore, Indianapolis, etc... I often wonder what the host cities think about "us." I don't know how many people attended this year, but I know that in the past attendance has hit about 6000. In the immediate area of the conference it can feel like every square foot of space is filled with potters and sculptors (and knick-knack makers!). I wanted to share a couple more images from my trip (again, this is just a tiny snippet of the week!).


This is the exhibition hall where vendors, schools, publishers, etc... have booths set up. It felt a little smaller this year than in the past (the whole conference felt that way). But that in no way means that there wasn't enough to see, hear & buy! I got some fun new tools that I'll share with you in the near future.

Most of the images that I am sharing with you were from the La Mesa tableware show from Santa Fe Clay. It's always one of my favorite shows, and one that I usually go to see 3 or 4 times. There were 150 place settings from different ceramic artists this year. Amazing!
This group of images is more black and white (the last NCECA post was more colorful). It was a different day and I was drawn to different pieces.

Julie Johnson. The gestures of the lines are irresistible.

Molly Hatch I've been eying Molly's work for a while. I love how she outline the shapes with a sketchy line.


Michael Kline I'm a big fan: I eat my steel cut oats out of one of Michael's bowls every morning and I'm a faithful reader of his blog. I love this (new?) work with the white slip and wax resist lines.

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Yunomis and Postcards

A few updates:

In a few hours (March 28, 2008. 10am ct) the Yunomi Invitational 2008 exhibition at Akar is opening online. You'll find several of my tea bowls in their online exhibition(!). My artist statement & resume are up on Akar's site now. I can't wait to see the show tomorrow. My tea bowls are in very good company! More to come on the show...

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My friend, Gary Jackson, put together this wonderful super sized postcard for me to take to NCECA last week. If you've come upon my blog via this postcard, welcome! If you'd like to sign up for the potteryblog.com mailing list, just go here. If you sign up, you'll automatically get an email whenever there is a new post. Or of course you can always sign up for the RSS or Atom feeds. I'm looking forward to hearing from the new readers out there. I've got a lot of interesting things in the works, many of which are responses to suggestions from potteryblog.com readers. Thanks for all of the emails and comments!

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Thursday, March 20, 2008

Live! From NCECA 2008 - Pittsburgh

Greetings from Pittsburgh! It's been quite a week. I've met a lot of great people, put faces to names that I've come to know through this blog, caught up with old friends, bought pots, bought tools, heard great speakers, participated in lively discussions, and looked at and picked up what must be hundreds of pots and the conference is only half over!

I wanted to share a handful of images of pieces that I've seen at shows this week. This is just a little itty bitty taste of what I've seen. Enjoy! (click on the images to see a bigger image.)

Beth Lo. I find this piece incredibly endearing.

Justin Rothshank. This has a dinosaur on it! Fossil fuel... get it?

Naomi Cleary. I just love how the drawings are on the inside of this cup.


Diana Fayt. I love Diana's work and this is the first time I have gotten to see her work in person. It's even more impressive in person.

Ursula Hargens. Her works makes me crave spring even more than I already am!

Simon Levin. I am such a fan of Simon's work. I don't know anyone else that gets surfaces like his out of a wood kiln (or any other kiln for that matter!).

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Monday, March 03, 2008

I'm getting ready for NCECA...are you?

I'm getting ready to head out to Pittsburgh in a week and a half to attend NCECA. One of my favorite parts of it is the cup sale. I love donating as many mugs as I can fit into my carry on (along with cups from friends who aren't attending). I really love spending time pouring over the hundreds of cups that are just sitting, unpretentiously, on long folding tables. Cups of all shapes & sizes from potters of all skill levels and from many corners of the world. The variety of designs and finishing techniques always amazes me. And unlike a normal gallery setting, you get to pick up almost every single piece if you want to and study them.
A little info on the cup sale from the NCECA website:
  • At the Louisville 2007 NCECA Conference, 745 cups (of every design and ceramic material imaginable) were donated to the Annual Cup Sale
  • An estimated 2000 viewers – many of them returning several times – visited the Cup Sale exhibition
  • Hundreds of eager buyers gathered throughout the morning hours on Friday to purchase their favorites
  • Within 3 hours of the Sale’s opening, a record $20,483 was raised for the NCECA Fund for Artistic Development!

And if you're not able to make it to NCECA this year, it's not to late to mail in a cup or two for the sale. You can ship your pots so they arrive by March 14th to:

Josh Green

(for NCECA Cup Sale)

Manchester Craftsmen’s Guild

1815 Metropolitan Street

Pittsburgh, PA 15233

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Is anyone else out there spending part of their mid-March in Pittsburgh? Let me know if you'd like to meet up in person. I'd love to get together with other bloggers and blog readers in person(!) Send me an email if you'd like to figure out a time to meet up for lunch, dinner, coffee or a beer (emily@sodafired.com).

And if you're not able to go to NCECA this year, I'm hoping to do some somewhat "live" blogging from the conference. I'll have my laptop, camera and an internet connection at my hotel. Check back to see what's happening!

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