All About: The First NPCG Conference at Arrowmont

Elise asked me to lead a small team of volunteers to research and write about gatherings that influenced the development of polymer as an art medium. This is the second of these posts and we hope to follow up with more. Special thanks to Steven Ford who provided this information about the Arrowmont Conference.

Name of Event: Making History: Pushing the Craft of Polymer Clay, the first national Conference of the National Polymer Clay Guild

Sponsoring Organization: National Polymer Clay Guild

Dates and Place held: Arrowmont School of Arts and Craft, Gatlinburg, TN; September 7-13, 1997

Mission Statement: The theme was to challenge polymer clay users to think differently about how they use the material by adapting traditions and techniques from other media; most of the polymer clay techniques at the time came from glass techniques. We wanted to expand the adaptive techniques to include metal, printmaking, fabric design and construction, and ceramics. Steven Ford envisioned bringing in “Masters of Other Media” to work with polymer clay, adapt and teach new techniques developed from their working methods.

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Rachel’s Thoughts inspired by Jed Perl’s Essay on the Artisanal Urge

In Jed Perl’s article, “The Artisanal Urge” American Craft (June/July 2008), he defends the “human desire to make something with one’s own hands” against the current stylistic trend of a more detached approach to creating art. Perl, an author of several books on art and the art critic for The New Republic, argues that the point of creating art is to allow the hand of the maker to be expressive whatever the chosen medium- be it paint, clay, ink or metal. Continue reading

MIPCES Exhibition: Margaret Regan

Margaret Regan, Insomnia Bowl, Undreamt Dreams, 1997, 12 3/4? x 11 3/4? x 3 1/4?

INSOMNIA BOWL, Undreamt Dreams
12¾” x 11¾” x 3¼”

For the MIPCES catalog, Margaret Regan wrote:

Margaret Regan, Acoustic Eggs, 1996-7

“I like images that float, and my work is characterized by a high degree of drift and space. There’s a dream state where you recognize an object, but not it’s surroundings. I love the interaction of control with happenstance, and the blend it produces seems true to how we live our lives.”

Recently, Margaret reflected: Continue reading