Posted by Mary Cloonan, Programs Director

We get a lot of great proposals for our conference and it is so hard to accept them all and find room in two days in a Convention Center to fit them all.  This year, we noticed a pattern; several proposals didn’t quite fit the usual categories we have constructed. Sure they dealt with education or professional practices, etc. …but didn’t exactly fit all the corners.

Like an El Camino, they weren’t a car and not quite a truck.  But it’s still badass and takes you places. These we tentatively dubbed the “The Gray Area” for they are reside in an in-between realm but still deal with that Jell-o between your ears.

A new conundrum is being forged, artists who don’t necessarily want to go back to school, but want to continue their educational quest. Roads diverged into residencies, apprenticeships, partnerships with non-art organizations or unique ways to combine ceramic skills within traditional, stuffy academia.

These are panels and lectures that aren’t confined by a traditional educational path or can act as a guide once you have left that route.  To make room for these, we have consolidated Student Perspectives into one day of programming and let the “Gray Area” occupy the other. However, in many ways they still relate to the perspectives of a student, since we never stop learning.

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