Thursday, July 3, 2008

First of all, I have to mention how excited I am about my first blog entry! I have been reading blogs from fellow potters for at least a year, but have been much too shy to start my own. But leave it to the natural sense of community that potters have – the group of potters I belong to, the Underground Potters, have started a blog that we can all participate in. So, shared responsibility, shared pleasures. Here we go!

My first experience with this world of blogs was when I researched any information available online on the potter that made a wonderful teapot I had purchased at the NCECA conference that took place in Baltimore, MD. It was at a show of salt and soda fired pots at the Potters Guild. And the potter’s name was Ron Philbeck.

I was so lucky that his blog was the first I came across, because even after extensive reading of all kinds of pottery blogs, I still consider his to be the gold standard. It is personal, gentle, and his generosity of spirit comes across in his writings, just as it did in his work (my lovely teapot). And once I read his entries, there was again that fantastic sense of community, in the list of links, and cross-referencing that takes place.

So, if all goes well, all my friends in the Underground Potters will enjoy sharing their thoughts, their work, and their lives with you. We all met as students at the Art School at Old Church in Demarest, NJ. This is a fantastic community art center, with a wonderful staff and some of the best pottery teachers around. My first class was with Frank and Polly Martin, and every teacher I took a class with was someone I felt honored to know, and learned a tremendous amount from. Now I look back and am still amazed at how fortunate I was when I went to my first show there, curated by Karen Karnes, in 1999. I was exposed to the best work around, and was hooked from the first class I took.

I am still constantly trying to find my own personal style, but I know now how to continue exploring, and all these voices are still in my head, helping me ask the right questions: Mikhail Zakin, Ina Chapler, DeBorah Goletz, Bea Bloom, Susan Beecher, Eric Lawrence, Sara Patterson, Judy Schaeffer, Ruth Borgenicht

Tuesday, July 1, 2008

The Last Pottery Show

Here are some of the photos from the last show The Underground Potters did at The Art School at Old Church in Demarest, NJ, in November of last year, showing the work of all 7 of us on display.

Both photos include pots from all seven of the group, who are Sandy Pancrazi, Ted Whittemore, Itsuko Ishiguro, Susan Bogen, Ellen Mulligan, Allan Drossman, and Cynthia Shevelew. Below are pots from us individually.