Don’t Blink!  but DO BLINC!!!

Don’t Blink! but DO BLINC!!!

Don’t miss this new event….

As a vehicle to allow many members to share their work or projects with the masses, we are adopting the Pecha Kucha style format for the conference. Blinc 20/20 is twenty slides that advance every twenty seconds. So these descriptions will be just as succinct.

This BRAND NEW conference programming format will be an exciting way to hear and see information on a HUGE variety of topics, from student themes, to international ceramics.  Blinc 20:20 takes place on both Thursday and Friday afternoon from 3-5pm in 3501G/H  Scheduled to appear are:

Mary Callahan Baumstark

Craftivist Clay: Illustrated through diverse examples from contemporary makers will be socially engaged, political, and communal DIY ceramics. A third-wave feminism examined through activism and performance in contemporary ceramics.


Comfort and body maps:  Physical and emotional narratives of a new trans visibility delivered in a context of crafting and domestic maintenance via immersive installations. They document their cycles of trauma, shame, and hope that come with them establishing their identity of queerness.

Mary Fritz 

Prototyping Close-packed Hexagonal Modules. Creating sculptural and functional forms by capitalizing on nature’s model of minimal material but with maximum variability.

Karen Jean Smith

Explorations of a Nemesis:  Figurative and narrative sculpture about the invasion of a non-native aquatic species by marrying art with science to explore this ecological issue.

Antra Sinha 

Her work evolved like she did in life: A presentation on evolving your artistic concept to parallel developments and collaborations your life. Working to stretch the boundaries of the material and personal comfort zones with curiosity.

Evelyne Schoenmann

What you always wanted to know about straight legs: Learn key factors for success in creating ceramics objects with long, straight legs. Evelyne will share ways to support your work during the firing process.

Margaret Park Smith

Reflecting on the object-makers’ role in an increasingly digitized global marketplace:  A presentation on the collaborative artwork between Margaret and her husband Josh Smith that addresses contemporary issues of time and space compression. Making tangible the tension between the material world and the abstraction of digitalization.

Sydney Ewerth

Proof of Presence: Playfully inefficient objects attempt to define distance and construct a space for identity. The vibration of outlandish materials and eccentric color  explores time using light and paint to map shadows as an abstracted footprint as its proof of presence.

Edward Harkness 

Orbs at Rest. Ceramic sculptures that meld the organic form with geometric elements.

Young Shin Kim

  As Long as Giraffe: Explores, through a zoomorphic way, an extension of Korean Pottery Tradition of hollow-ringed pouring vessels.

Simon Levin & Denise Joyal

Ceramic Arts: Rounding Out Education: Ceramic arts education should explore more than just artistic concepts but become an integrated curriculum for the full “Liberal Arts” experience; celebrating human civilization through the collaborative environment that creates a community

Matt Kelleher

Contemplating Cone 3: As a continuous curiosity, pottery for Kelleher is a sculptural form that still celebrates utility. He achieves an atmospheric, veiled surface with poured slip and cone 3 firing.

Luke Sheets 

Expanding the Wood Fired Palette: Exploring low temperature wood fired ceramics through research and experimentation.

Alexandra Jelleberg & Bradley Klem

GrowlerFest 2015. Presenting the history and evolution of various types of growlers, including steel, glass and ceramic and how contemporary artists are making them for the craft beer revolution.

Priscilla Mouritzen

Keeping it Fresh: After 50 years of making pots discover how to maintain excitement and find inspiration from the process of repetition.

Rhonda Willers

Three in Four:

After having three children in four years , the artist had to re-evaluate her studio practice both in allotted time and an emotional reflection on priorities.

Ellen Kleckner

Productive Fallout: – How your studio practice can benefit from art residencies, travel and museum research with the lasting impact of material innovation and discovery of new techniques.

Qwist Joseph

When The Wind Stops: Exploring the common worries in the creative process that are intensified by the academic environment and learning to tame the frenzied energy and not allow it to impede creativity.

Joani Inglett

Southern Femininity: A new domestic ideal in tableware with layered and mono-printed, under-glazed surfaces depicting emotional ideas in each place setting.

Power & Light or the Plaza at night?

Power & Light or the Plaza at night?

If you’re staying downtown or at any of the conference hotels, the Power and Light  district  provides convenient places to eat, drink, and connect with friends due to its close proximity.  Only a couple of blocks from the convention center, this district offers a WIDE variety of retail & restaurants.  Although some of the restaurants are national or regional chains, the offerings here represent a variety of ethnicities and styles of food and many are roomy enough for large parties of people.  Cosentino’s Market is right on the edge of Power & Light.  If you missed our earlier blog about the magnificence of the market, check that out here.  20-plJohnny’s Tavern, which is a small regional chain that began in Lawrence, KS, is always a great place for an incredible “world famous” burger, or wings.   And while Johnny’s also has delicious Pizza, it’s hard to compete with the an actual Pizza Bar, which is a Kansas City original.  Take a few friends and share a few ‘zas, because with the wide variety of options, it would be hard to pick just one!  Looking for a healthier option?  Locally owned and operated, the Mixx offers the freshest ingredients and a variety of creative concoctions in the form of its homemade salads, soups and sandwiches. UnknownThe Mixx serves breakfast, lunch and dinner and also features seasonal grab-and-go meals and advance ordering options, which are ideal for conference attendees!  On the other hand, if you want to treat yourself, try the family owned and operated, Mema’s Bakery.  If you’ve never had Povitica, definitely don’t have theirs.  It will spoil you for the rest of your life.    Power and Light is also one of the biggest hotspots for night life.  You’ll find plenty of bars, clubs and often live music.  You can Howl at the Moon at a trendy dueling piano bar, or feel a little devilish at Angel’s Rock Bar, or be independent and do your own thing at the indie_on_mainIndie Bar, which, although it’s designed to be a pre-show-at-the-midland drink or post-show nightcap spot, is too hip & chill to skip.  Wherever you chose to get your groove on, know that bars in KC close at 3am.  Check out Dine-Drink-Play for a list of more places to eat, shop, and drink in the nearby Power and Light District.   

If you’re looking for something more upscale, The Plaza is Kansas City’s upscale central district for shopping and dining and is a short drive from the exhibitions located at the Nelson Atkins, Kemper Museum of Contemporary Art, Kansas City Art Institute and UMKC. It’s Spanish architecture is covered with vast amounts of tile work and is surrounded with fountains. There are many chain clothing stores there including H&M, Banana Republic, American Apparel, and Urban Outfitters to name a few. You can also catch a movie at the Cinemark Palace at the Plaza for an evening break from shopping. If you’re in the mood for some family size portioned Italian eats, head to Buca di Beppo. Their maze-like restuarant could keep anyone entertained, as the walls are covered with hilarious decorations (just be sure to ask where the bathroom is before you go looking for it). From just spaghetti to Chicken Parmesan, their food is exceptional. Here are a few more of the many choices the Country Club Plaza has to offer:

Buca di Beppo
310 West 47th Street Kansas CityMO 64112
209 W. 46th Terrace Kansas CityMO 64112
Tomfooleries Restaurant and Bar (Breakfast Buffet)
612 West 47th Street Kansas CityMO 64112
Scooter’s Coffee and Yogurt

446 West 47th Street Kansas CityMO 64112
P.F. Chang`s
102 West 47th Street Kansas CityMO 64112
Potbelly Sandwich Shop
4725 Broadway Kansas CityMO 64112
Zoes Kitchen
100 Ward Parkway Kansas CityMO 64112
The Cheesecake Factory
4701 Wyandotte Kansas CityMO 64112
Cold Stone Creamery
114 West 47th Street Kansas CityMO 64112
Bo Lings
4701 Jefferson St, Kansas City, MO 64112
Fogo de Chao Brazilian Steakhouse
222 W 47th St, Kansas City, MO 64112

Inside NCECA! Vol 2, No. 15 – First Time Tips

Inside NCECA! Vol 2, No. 15 – First Time Tips

If this is your first NCECA, (or even if it’s not), everything can be a little overwhelming.  So we put together a few tools to help you make the most of your conference experience.  First, take a look at the video below, which goes over basically the whole conference experience, then, be sure to check out the handy list of links to previous blog articles which can give you more details about the things you hear about in the video.  Be sure to plan to join me at my NCECA for New Attendees session on Wednesday at 3:30 to ask any remaining questions you may have.  During the conference, you can also always stop by the NCECA booth and ask for advice, help or input.  Lastly, be sure to follow the blog for important information daily leading up to the conference, and continue to follow it AFTER the conference too, to stay in the know about dates, deadlines, and announcements!


Learn about the Roundtable here

Learn about Projects Space here

Learn about Student programming here

Learn about Unconventional Clay here

Learn about Exhibitions in general here

Learn about Liz Lerman and the Keynote here

Learn about the Wednesday Bus TOUR here or  Learn about Wednesday Shuttle Bus Service here

Learn about Marge Levy, our closing lecturer here

Learn about process room here and here

Learn about Grey Area programming here

Learn about the Randall Session here

Learn about the Resource Hall here

Learn about K-12 programming here

Learn about Demonstrators here, here, here and here

Learn about shuttles to receptions here

Learn about Clay Stories here

Learn about the Cup Sale here

50 Women: A Celebration of Women’s Contribution to Ceramics

50 Women: A Celebration of Women’s Contribution to Ceramics

Ceramics is more than just a few hundred famous artists or those who teach it in the US. Ceramics are independent artists—successful and struggling; Instructors and students; young and old; working in many disciplines. Ceramic artists use an infinite number of fabrication, firing and finishing methods.  For this momentous conference, I teamed up with celebrated artist and dedicated instructor, Alex Kraft to put together 50 Women: A Celebration of Women’s Contribution to Ceramics. Artists representing 13 countries make up the roster.

This exhibition will be featured on the NCECA Bus Tour North Route.

(Tickets available here)

Ms. Kraft articulates the intent of the exhibition by stating:

Our exhibition provides a new model of engagement reaching far beyond individuals in the field of ceramics, arts and crafts.

10419970_244356559088586_8921280797968526281_nThis is definitely the case. Alex and I started with an exhibition idea and ended with an event with global impact. From having feminist icon Gloria Steinem tweet about the exhibition to creating a Facebook page with over 6,500 likes internationally, we continue to work to expand the audience for ceramics.

Kansas City’s beautiful and iconic American Jazz Museum at 18th & Vine hosts this spectacular tour de force of women in ceramics.

Here’s an appetizer for you:

If this makes you hungry for more, buy your bus ticket now, and if you’re hungry in general, be sure to also check out some of these great places to eat in the neighborhood.

We are setting the table.. but first, a few appetizers!

We are setting the table.. but first, a few appetizers!

Over the past several weeks we have been working through all of the images, text and stories submitted by NCECA members for the Across the Table, Across the Land exhibition.   While there are several “large” projects included in the exhibition, there are many projects that may typically go unseen or unheard of simply because they were made to connect with individuals and not for a broader audience. The wonderful thing about this exhibition is that it brings to the forefront some of these quieter stories.

Be sure to sign up for the NCECA Bus Tour, NORTH ROUTE on Wednesday to enjoy these incredible projects and much more.


From Fling Hill High School in Oakton, VA,  Jess Rappaport and Olivia Ferrer demonstrate their love and appreciation of their High School teacher, Julia Cardone, as they worked together to create a base for her wedding cake.

FerrerRappaport_CakePlate_Julia Cardone#2

“We feel that our piece explores the way in which ceramics is a tool for connecting the lives of so many. It is an example of how the daily use of ceramic ware allows many artists to be present in the lives of friends, family, and strangers throughout the world, just as we were able to be present at her event through our work.”

FerrerRappaport_Cake Plate_Julia Cardone#1


From Rancho High School in Las Vegas, NV, Yesenia Godoy created “One Cup for All”, designed to bring people together through a shared cup – in this case for her mother and father. 

Godoy_Cup For One Cup for All_Godoy_#2

” I thought, what can physically bring people together? So I created this multi-handled chalice so that it can be easily shared between people, as it is seen here being shared by my mother and father.”


From Pine Crest High school 9th grade student Ishani Singh, who dutifully created this sweet platter for holding oranges to share with her teammates in diving.  We are in love with this photograph! 

Singh_Orange_Ishani Singh_#6-2


We look forward to celebrating our connections to community with NCECA members at La Esquina, in Charlotte Street Foundation!

To celebrate its 50th Anniversary Across the Table, Across the Land, examines how clay connects communities through food. Considering the table as a literal and metaphorical space, this project includes objects, photographs, videos, and associated events during the conference, all drawn from an online archive populated with stories and images of work by NCECA members and K-12 Challenge participants in the US and abroad. Visit and follow acrossthetable2015 on Instagram to view all submissions and to connect with associated exhibition programs taking place during NCECA.


Location: Charlotte Street Foundation, La Esquina Thursday Night Shuttle

1000 W. 25th St, Kansas City, MO 816-994-7730,

Online: and acrossthetable2015 on instagram

Thanks to the Windgate Charitable Foundation for supporting Across the Table, Across the Land.