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New Chapter at Contemporary Craft

June 21, 2021

Pittsburgh’s Contemporary Craft begins its second half-century this year with a new Executive Director in a new facility in a new neighborhood, carrying on the tradition of what began as The Store for Arts and Crafts and People-Made Things in 1971.  Southwest Pennsylvania native Rachel Saul Rearick steps in to take her place among the leaders of the organization founded by Elizabeth Rockwell Raphael. Begun with the intention of providing support for artists working in craft materials, Contemporary Craft retains that mission, with fifty years of showcasing work, supporting artists, and encouraging the Pittsburgh community to explore creativity through craft.

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Pandemic Zoom Group Becomes Forum for Potters

April 07, 2021

When Deborah Bedwell transitioned from Executive Director to Trustee of Baltimore Clayworks, she made a point of continuing to teach one class each semester.  Her retirement at the end of 2011 from the organization she and a group of artists founded in 1980 did not curtail her enthusiasm for teaching.  For over a decade, Bedwell has continued to guide potters in a variety of topics in her Thursday morning class.  In March of 2020, she was doing just that when the COVID-19 pandemic shuttered Baltimore Clayworks.  The determination of Bedwell and her students not to be idled led to a response that transitioned from a simple on-line Zoom substitute for class to a generative forum that speaks to the collective nature of the origins of Baltimore Clayworks itself.

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The Art League Reopening for Spring Term

February 27, 2021

As wintery February draws to a close and the evening light is starting to look like spring, there is reason to be hopeful that the long pandemic of 2020 might be coming to a close.  At The Art League of Alexandria, Virginia, nine months of mostly shuttered doors is giving way to registration for a spring session that just might look normal.  Last autumn we featured The Art League and its Ceramics Chair, Blair Meerfeld, in a story about the effects of closures on art communities.  We spoke to him recently about the challenges of re-opening.

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