Well known and respected ceramic artist, Christa Assad, needs our help. A recent fire left her with a broken back, homeless and unable to work for a minimum of three months.
Currently there is a raffle being held with a number of amazing ceramics works by different artists to help.
Visit https://www.youcaring.com/christaassad to see all the great work
Christa is a wonderful artist who has 2 beautiful teapots in fif-TEA. Please consider helping her if you are able!
As many of you know, Craft Alliance is celebrating our fiftieth year of doing what we do best: Craft. One could say that we have become steeped in tradition with a will for continual innovation. This notion is best described through the work that we present in our galleries, and the educational programming that we offer.
Our current biennial teapot exhibition, fif-TEA, presents a wide and varied approach to labor in the studio, while providing a format that is easy to talk about. A teapot is accessible, yet it has many moving parts. Not so much the, “I’m a little teapot short and stout,” childhood song we are all familiar with, but really more of a ballad composed of artistic intent, intellectual curiosity, and material engagement; all the while working from a center of gravity, which is the human being.
Porcelain sculptures by Esther Shimazu
All 3 of these little beauties were featured in our 2011 exhibition Multiple Personalities.
CA Spotlight: Jim Ibur
Meet Jim Ibur: Jim was a longtime member of the ceramics faculty at Craft Alliance. He is currently the Coordinator of Ceramic Art and Assistant Chair of Design, Visual and Performing Arts at Saint Louis Community College - Meramec. Although no longer a CA staff member, Jim is still very much involved in the goings on at Craft Alliance, helping with certain events and showing his work in exhibitions (he currently has 2 teapots on display in fif-TEA: 14th Biennial Teapot Exhibition).
How did you first become involved with Craft Alliance? My first experience with CA was an apprenticeship when I was 18 in 1978. Arthur Towata was the mentor for three just graduated high school kids. We stomped out clay as there was no mixer and made things and listened to Arthur talk about ceramics and the field. Some of what he said I still use with my students: Imagine a marble endlessly rolling on the inside of a bowl…imagine that curve for clarity… I still love that image…endlessly rolling…
Do you have a favorite memory of CA? That is tougher…after graduate school and residencies at the Archie Bray Foundation in Montana and the Banff Centre in Canada, I worked as a ceramics instructor at CA for 16 years from 1987 to 2003. I taught every kind of clay class to every kind of student. I met an amazing cross section of St. Louis and they all were such great people…and we brought in great visiting artists, too!
If you could give one piece of advice to emerging craft artists, what would it be? Have a clear plan and develop a wide array of skills and approaches to generating income for the inevitable tough times. Be smart!!! and work super hard…that’s more than one piece, I know…cuz, guess what, it’s a multi pronged solution to a complex question!
What do you hope to see from CA in its next 50 years? I hope that CA continues to serve all of St. Louis. Making things is so empowering no matter what your economic reality is and when people come together to just make, real connection happens! I hope that St. Louis steps up its recognition of what a gem of an institution Craft Alliance is and supports CA with respect and ever more generous contributions! It’s a valid and viable arts institution with really talented people staffing it and the whole thing creates community, beauty, and appreciation for the hand and the effort that comes from that kind of commitment.
Top image: Patti Warashina, Trigger Happy & The Flywheel Effect
Bottom image:John Zimmerman, Stacked Revolution
This pieces are currently on display in The Price of Freedom at Walker’s Point Center for the Arts. The exhibition was co-curated by CA’s Director of Exhibitions Stefanie Kirkland.
Artwork by CA Artist in Residence Hunter Creel.