Dirt and pixels are both effective mediums.
As an artist and educator, my interests are well suited to the educational environment unique to ceramics art instruction. An interdisciplinary awareness acknowledges the parallels between established genres, supports engagement in artistic diversity, and allows innovation in the field of ceramics. I am
committed to the myriad of ways of inviting
each student to explore creative possibilities.
It takes an enormous amount of sensitivity to
uncover the questions that open the aesthetic
sense in each student. Decoding their personal reasoning and interpretations is an approach I value. In each class, I provide a supportive environment where students feel safe to explore and take risks while pursuing their vision. An effective teacher knows when to step out the way of each student’s creativity while upholding high standards and expectations.
Beginning level students are introduced to the primary techniques used to create artworks while learning fundamental methods of concept development. Primary materials require creative engagement and lively exploration to arrive at a unique solution. Each assignment underscores exposure, experimentation and playfulness as well as basic research and development practices. Collaboration is promoted not only as a way to make art but also as a way of life and through this shared process, each student can make each project their own, develop multiple perspectives, and break free of the assumptions about what art is, and can be. Students also become familiar with historical as well as contemporary artists who use sculptural forms of expression and attain an understanding of where their work might fit into this continuum.
Mature art grows from a solid foundation, mastery, and sustained exploration. Advanced courses continue to build a vocabulary of technical skills with an emphasis on individual creative research and meaningful concept development. Students are introduced to more advanced tools and processes and continue to articulate themselves within the rapidly transforming and expanding field of contemporary art practice. Today, digital technologies, material knowledge, ecological/social awareness can all pair with utilitarian and sculptural, and installation ceramics. Constructing and maintaining equipment is also essential and required. Advanced students strengthen technical skills through courses that focus on the rigorous development of skills and concepts with the goal of pursuing and maintaining an individual approach to material and process.
Honesty, availability, and reliability are characteristics that excellent teachers possess. It is important to engage in research and actively exhibit as an example of what a professional in the field should be doing. Through an active professional practice, students see they also must work hard and go beyond the ordinary to develop their distinctive voice. Sincerely and accurately answering questions and addressing concerns makes clear my belief that each of them can excel. I seek to facilitate an environment where students take responsibility for their education as active participants, not passive recipients. By creating hands-on, interactive, and relational activities the class community can engage in, I encourage an awareness of what it means to be an artist today.
I am dedicated to the education and professional training of artists, scholars, and audiences within the educational environment and beyond. I champion the interaction between theory and practice in the hope of producing citizen artists who advocate for the arts through their work in local, national and international communities. In the end, my students learn to think critically, creatively, and collaboratively. Success is measured when students think, speak, and make work that reflects their personal vision and become the enthusiastic participants our world needs today.