Nestled in the foothills of the Appalachian Mountains, Frederick, MD is home to Hood College and The Frederick Clay Studio and is an anchor to the regional ceramic community, serving as the hub where atmospheric ceramists converge. The large number of wood and soda-fired kilns in the region provides plentiful opportunities for aesthetic conversations. Each Ash & Flash artist approaches form and content from a different perspective, offering variety and aesthetic conversation within the context of shared atmospheric firings.
The work emerging from these community kilns displays not only the effort of the maker, but also the physical demands of atmospheric firing. Hours of active firing produce liquid effects: flame in an atmospheric kiln moves like the current of water in a river. Deliberate kiln design and stacking guides the movement of flame. Heavy amounts of ash and soda suggest the effort involved; flashing in quieter areas parallels the kiln-side conversations had within the umbral glow of a kiln lit by superheated brick.
Thematically, the participating artists represent a cross-section of vessel makers. Varied vessels, nestled in groups, speak to the interconnectedness and diversity of our communities, while individual functional works represent nurtured bodies and minds. Physical labor and meals are shared. The interaction of artists opens an environment for exchanging ideas and discussing aesthetics. Artists include: Joyce Michaud, Lisa York, Denise Joyal, Tim Sherman, Tameria Martinez, J. Christopher Landers, Carolanne Currier, Jacklyn Scott, Debbie Williamson, and Scott Williamson. This exhibition is part of the National Council on Education for the Ceramic Arts 52nd annual conference that will be held in Pittsburgh March 14-17, 2018. The National Council on Education for the Ceramic Arts is a dynamic organization that inspires global advancement and appreciation of the field through programs, exhibitions, opportunities and resources. www.nceca.net