It really is the rare bird who can traipse back and forth between the world of sculpture and functional pottery with ease. Perhaps therein lies the misconception, “ease” plays no part in it. Rather a dedication to content and artisanship are the constant companion to a maker who keeps every tool sharpened and at the ready to explore and express and create as needed when needed. These are the makers we can rely upon as keepers of the craft. Melissa Menicini is such a maker.
From 2001 – 2011 Sandra Daulton Shaughnessy taught in the NCC classrooms and was much beloved by students and administration alike. When she left, she didn’t go far. Her considerable gifts have been in play at the Edina Art Center where she has been the Pottery Supervisor. The ever-expanding concentric rings of the ceramic community continue because of her contributions to the field.
Brett Freund has been a regular in the NCC sales gallery and the NCC classroom for a few years now. An unassuming character with a genuine love of the material. We invite you to enjoy a quick Q & A with Brett and hope that his voice informs your experience of his wares in the gallery and then in your home. Not everyone has easy access to their voice and demeanor through written word, but we think Brett delivers on both accounts. We are proud to represent his work and equally pleased that the 2018 McKnight Jury chose him as a Fellow this summer.
Steven Godfrey lives in the largest state in the union, where he has plenty of room to consider the smaller, significant moments that can get taken for granted. Things like the light of day, or lack thereof, become familiar points of reflection. Steve will be leading a workshop at the American Pottery Festival next week with Sam Chung. Register here.
Guillermo Guardia is a relatively recent addition to the alchemy of ceramic artists in the Twin Cities and NCC has been delighted to have his talents represented on our teaching roster, in the sales gallery, and as a 2018 American Pottery Festival artist. Guardia creates colorful figures and functional wares emblazoned with glyphs representing his Peruvian and Japanese heritage. Born in Peru, he has lived in the US since 2002 and remains in active pursuit of his artistic endeavors throughout his life journey.
“How was NCECA 2018 you might be asking?” The short, Minnesota, answer is “Great!”. The real answer is much longer and more heartfelt.
We are humbled by the convergence of 6,000+ artists, educators, enthusiasts, collectors, and students.
We are inspired by the speaking and creative talents of contributing makers and the savvy curiosity of each visitor.
We are endlessly entertained by stories, personalities, and all of those moments that occur organically during a week of togetherness with your work family.
In the wake of the American Pottery Festival, which brings with it packing, shipping, clean up, and notes of gratitude sent across the country, we here at NCC are still catching our collective breath and reflecting on the accomplishments of everyone who helped us pull off the most successful fundraiser to date. Here’s the highlight reel:
“Did you have fun at NCECA?” just spilled out of the mouth of another curious Northern Clay Center constituent. Those of you who have attended the NCECA (National Council on Education for the Ceramic Arts) conference know that while “fun” is the operative word for most attendees (I mean, how could you not have fun with thousands of your closest clay friends?), for those of us on the service side of the conference (with our offsite galleries and resource tables), there are other words seemingly more apropos.
Many warm-hearted and well-fed thanks to all of the participants in this year’s Chili Cook-off! Some were brave enough to sample chilis and vote; some contributed through volunteerism; some threw caution to the February winds and tried their hands at wheel-throwing and handbuilding; and then there were those who toiled, boiled, experimented, and schlepped their chili contenders in crock pots to be judged by friends and strangers alike. The event grows in size and popularity ever year, and we are grateful to all of you for this.