Teaching Artist Spotlight: Glynnis Lessing

Glynnis Lessing’s move to Minneapolis in 2012 from Chicago was also a transition from teaching at Lillstreet Art Center, where she had been since 1989, to teaching at NCC. She reports it was a very easy transition and that she loves her NCC community. We love Glynnis and are thrilled at the interesting concepts she brings to the teaching roster. This May, she will be teaching “Throw It On” – a class in which students will examine a few of the extraordinary uses of the potter’s wheel to create pieces with unique attachments and segments. This will include thorough investigations of spouts, knobs, feet, and stacked forms. 

Glynnis loves the community that grows around each class. She says, “I love meeting students and seeing what they make. I’m so often inspired by them!” What makes Glynnis such a wonderful instructor is her own love of learning, she is “…constantly challenged to find ways to communicate my knowledge to the students and also to come up with new ideas for what to teach.” The key to success, in her opinion, is perseverance, tenacity, and an ability to enjoy the process, she notes “this is a field where simply sticking to it pays off!” 

Glynnis has seen amazing results when students pursue continuous improvement and challenge themselves. She notes how crucial it is to learn from mistakes and to see them as an opportunity to learn. It is exactly this spirit that keeps students coming back to her dynamic classes. 

If you act fast, there are still a few places in “Throw It On” to join Glynnis on Wednesday nights from May 8 to June 5.

In closing, we asked Glynnis to consider her many years of community class experiences and to share one of her most memorable moments. She told us about a 20-year-old blind student who had never had a clay class. “I had to completely re-think how I would teach her handbuilding. We figured out a way she could understand how to throw a slab. She became quite good at it and I still have the video on my phone of her throwing a slab. She is now getting her MFA at Harvard!”

How can you not celebrate a moment like that? Get signed up today for “Throw It On” and you might be surprised how your processes evolve while you are in conversation with Glynnis.