Saturday, April 22, 2017

Laguna B Mix Cone 10 Casting Slip

TAKEN! Thanks!

I have an unused (although very dusty) 50 pound box of Laguna BMix casting slip (Cone 10, dry) available to anyone who would like it. Contact Pick up is in the River Arts District.

Friday, April 21, 2017

Tour d'Art in downtown Morganton on April 27th

Thanks to our April Clay Club hosts at West Union Art Studios for the heads-up about this event! The Tour d'Art in downtown Morganton runs from 5-8 pm next Thursday, April 27th.

Enjoy a creative stroll to explore downtown Morganton's fine art and craft destinations.

Participating Locations:
West Union Art Studios
Burke Arts Council
Jenluma Clayworks
Hamilton Williams Gallery & Studio
Sketch Art Space
City Hall

More info here:

and here:

Contemporary Clay: A Survey of Contemporary American Ceramics Symposium Rebroadcast

The Contemporary Clay Symposium was held at Western Carolina University in October, 2016. The live symposium rebroadcast is scheduled for Friday, April 28th. Watch online or at any of a number of host sites around the US, including Western Carolina University and UNC Asheville.

From the Western Carolina University website:

Curated by Heather Mae Erickson, Contemporary Clay, examines the evolving, expanded field of clay and ceramics. Exciting shifts throughout the field push this limitless material through new processes and concepts. This exhibition aims to show the depth and breadth of this material and its user’s ideas, ranging from, but not limited to, traditional and non-traditional functional objects, rapid prototyping, use of mixed materials in objects and installations, and unfired clay as a final material. This exhibition encourages viewers to consider the concepts, processes, and contexts of clay in contemporary art. Each artist, from emerging to established, was selected due to his or her noteworthy contribution to the field of contemporary clay and ceramics.

The live symposium rebroadcast is scheduled for Friday, April 28, 2017. Live feed and further information here:

Tuesday, April 18, 2017

Professional Craft Artist Summit at Haywood Community College on April 26th

Here are the details from the Haywood Community College website:

Haywood Community College’s Small Business Center will hold a Professional Craft Artist Summit, “Crafting Your Success,” Wednesday, April 26, from 9:00 a.m.-5:00 p.m. in the Creative Arts Building on the College campus.

Experience a one-day conference specifically designed to address needs and challenges faced by current and prospective craft artist business owners. Arts-based businesses are unique ventures and require special business planning methods. This not to miss one-day event will provide the tools needed to move your business forward. Take this opportunity to network with fellow and prospective craft artists, learn skills and the power of collaboration along the way.

Deanna Lynch, owner of Deanna Lynch Textiles, will present at the summit. According to her, “The artist summit will be a great place to gain some insight and perspective. It's always beneficial to gather new and fresh information about business growth and development as an artist. Things change quickly and you don't want to be left behind! No matter how many talks or seminars I go to, I always pick up something useful that I can implement into my business.”

Enjoy a powerful keynote session from Brad Dodson of Mud Dabbers Pottery & Crafts, who has launched a successful venture while mentoring fellow artists and diversifying their product mix to meet the ever-changing needs of the market.

Sessions will include:

• Image - Speakers, Jessy Duque, HCC Marketing and Andie Robbins, Write Simple
• Sell – Speakers, Terri Gess, HCC Professional Crafts and Carrie Keith, Twigs and Leaves Gallery
• Money –Carolina Small Business Development Fund and Deanna Lynch, Deanne Lynch Textiles
• Plan –Russ Seagle, Sequoyah Fund & Kelsey Schissel, Plays in Mud Pottery
• People –Tonya Wilson Snider, Ten Biz
• Protect – Sarah Pacifi, Sheppard Insurance and Norman Leonard, Ward & Smith

According to Lindsey Solomon, Haywood County Arts Council Director, “I find the Professional Crafts Artist Summit exciting on so many levels. As someone in arts administration, seeing partnerships develop between businesses and artists and educators is watching my field come to life – it’s about boosting business skills for those artists that are new and learning, connecting them with peer artists who have the skills they want to know, and encouraging them to tell the stories of their artistic expression. I went to school to learn how to support artists, and I’m happy the Haywood County Arts Council has the opportunity to share in the growth of this great Summit.”

There is a registration fee of $25. Registration deadline is April 24. Lunch and light snacks provided. Visit for more information or email This event is sponsored by the Small Business Center Network, HCC Foundation, Western Women’s Business Center, Haywood County Arts Council, the Sequoyah Fund and the Smoky Mountain News.

Register online here:

Saturday, April 15, 2017

Blue Ridge Craft Trails of Western North Carolina project launched

I posted back in December about the Community Foundation of Western North Carolina awarding a grant to the Blue Ridge National Heritage Area (BRNHA) to help launch the Blue Ridge Craft Trails. The trails will be a digital updating of the “Craft Heritage Trails of Western North Carolina” guidebooks published by Handmade in America. The project has been awarded a $90,000 grant from the Appalachian Regional Commission and the BRNHA has released some more information about it. The press release is below. The Asheville Citizen-Times also has a story about it today.

April 12, 2017
Asheville, North Carolina

Blue Ridge National Heritage Area and Partners Blaze a New Trail for Blue Ridge Craft Artists and Collectors

The Blue Ridge National Heritage Area is blazing a new trail to boost the region’s craft industry across Western North Carolina, thanks to a $90,000 grant from the Appalachian Regional Commission.

“Today we are pleased to launch the Blue Ridge Craft Trails of Western North Carolina, a digital project that will help more visitors discover the rich heritage of crafts and connect with artisans in our mountain communities,” said Angie Chandler, executive director of the Blue Ridge National Heritage Area.

Appalachian Regional Commission officials see the Blue Ridge Craft Trails as a pathway to new economic opportunities across a region hard-hit by job losses in traditional manufacturing over the past decades.

“Helping Appalachia leverage its cultural and natural assets into economic opportunity is one of ARC’s key investment strategies for the Region.” said ARC Federal Co Chair Earl Gohl. “The Crafts Trail is an example of how this strategy is being put to work to create jobs and generate revenue across Western North Carolina.”

The ARC grant is matched with funds from the North Carolina Arts Council and the Community Foundation of Western North Carolina, and other private gifts.

Handmade in America, first managed by Becky Anderson, created the original Craft Heritage Trails of Western North Carolina in the 1990s, connecting visitors to hundreds of craft studios, galleries, schools, historic places and inns across the mountains. The 3rd edition of the Craft Heritage Trail book featuring nearly 500 different sites was published in 2003.

The BRHNA’s Blue Ridge Craft Trails of Western North Carolina will update those listings for the digital age, offering online visitors a portal for desktop and mobile applications. As phases of the project are completed, technology will allow collectors to connect with craft artisans to purchase their wares and visit their studios and to locate the many craft galleries and festivals found in Western North Carolina.

The current project is considered the planning phase and will include at least six listening sessions across the region to gather ideas and comments from artists and communities. Project partners offering in-kind meeting space and support for these sessions are the Southern Highland Craft Guild in Asheville, Penland School of Crafts and Toe River Arts Council near Spruce Pine, Qualla Arts and Crafts Mutual in Cherokee, Blowing Rock Arts and History Museum, Tryon Arts and Crafts, and John C. Campbell Folk School in Brasstown.

In addition to the listening sessions, the grant also includes funds for market research, site documentation and the development of a web portal for an initial 75 sites across the 25 county regions and a brochure. Subsequent sites will be added in future phases.

Crafts have created paychecks for mountain families over the past century. In the early 20th century, landmark institutions sprang up to preserve handicrafts passed down through generations.

“The Appalachian mountains of Western North Carolina are the center of a thriving craft artisan community that goes back to the Eastern Band of the Cherokee Indian,” stated Wayne Marin, director of the North Carolina Arts Council. “Clearly, any documentation that celebrates this rich history and creates awareness about traditional and contemporary craft-making will result in economic improvements, including jobs and tourism in Western N.C.”

Professional craft artisans across the region generate $206 million annually in sales and paychecks, according to a 2008 economic impact study on the craft industry in Western North Carolina. The unique craft artworks mastered in the mountains contribute to local economies with increased tourism, the study showed. Tourists in search of handmade crafts and authentic mountain heritage spend an average of $643 a day and typically stay longer than other visitors.

Heritage tourism in the Blue Ridge National Heritage Area contributes $2.39 billion annually to the regional economy, supporting more than 30,000 jobs and generating $176.5 million annually in state and local tax revenue, according to a 2014 economic impact study.

The Blue Ridge Craft Trails project builds on the successful model of the Blue Ridge Music Trails that the BRNHA launched in 2013. With a printed guidebook from UNC Press and an online platform (, the Blue Ridge Music Trails celebrates the region’s homegrown music, and guides fans to venues and festivals across the western part of the state.

“The N.C. Arts Council has a long-standing collaboration with the Blue Ridge National Heritage Area that improves quality of life and local economies through promoting unique cultural assets like music and craft,” Martin added. “We are delighted to continue our partnership with through the development of the Blue Ridge Craft Trails.”

“Now the Blue Ridge Craft Trails of Western North Carolina will help guide visitors to discover mountain craft artists firsthand. We’re on an exciting path that promises economic growth for our mountain communities in the years to come,” Chandler said.

About the Blue Ridge National Heritage Area:

Since its enactment by Congress in 2003, the Blue Ridge National Heritage Area Partnership has awarded 154 grants totaling over $2.1 million and leveraging another $4.5 million in matching contributions from local governments and the private sector. These grants have funded projects in all 25 counties of Western North Carolina. The BRNHA Partnership is the nonprofit organization charged with preserving, interpreting, developing, and celebrating the rich and unique natural and cultural heritage in the 25-county Blue Ridge National Heritage Area.

About the Appalachian Regional Commission:
The Appalachian Regional Commission ( is an economic development agency of the federal government and 13 state governments focusing on 420 counties across the Appalachian Region. ARC's mission is to innovate, partner, and invest to build community capacity and strengthen economic growth in Appalachia to help the Region achieve socioeconomic parity with the nation.

Thursday, April 13, 2017

Recap: April Clay Club with Kim Ellington at West Union Art Studios in Morganton

We had a great Clay Club in Morganton! Thanks to Briana Blackwelder for organizing it; to Adam and Molly Mackay and everyone at West Union Art Studios for hosting us; and to Kim Ellington for talking with us about Catawba Valley Pottery.

West Union Art Studios is a terrific group studio in downtown Morganton. In addition to the working space for potters and ceramic artists, there is a gallery in the front of the space. Signature Day Program artists display some wonderful 2D work there. The studios’ description on their Facebook page says, “West Union Art Studios, LLC brings together artists, art culture, art education, and community to Morganton, NC and the surrounding areas,” and this is very evident from spending a little time there. West Union Art Studios will be participating in downtown Morganton’s Tour d'Art on April 27th - look for more about that on the blog soon.

Kim Ellington talked about the history and tradition of pottery in the Catawba Valley, where he moved after graduating from Haywood Community College. He got to know Burlon Craig, the last in a long line of local potters, in the 1980s. Kim helped Burlon with firing his kiln and Burlon answered Kim’s many questions about making pottery, including finding local clay, making glazes and kiln-firing. Kim recommended finding your own clay if you can and suggested asking your neighbors what they know - “you’ll end up with an interesting story if nothing else.” He brought clay samples for us to see and feel. Kim talked about the glaze Catawba Valley Pottery is known for, which is made from ash, powdered glass and clay. (A substitute for glass would be a mix of half silica, half feldspar.)

Face jugs weren’t a part of the Catawba Valley Pottery tradition. Kim told us that Burlon started making them after a customer asked for one. Burlon asked what the customer would pay for a face and the customer said five bucks. (At the time, Burlon was selling his pots for five dollars per gallon - pricing by gallon was a common way of pricing pots.) So Burlon made one. A neighbor (and former potter) saw it and asked Burlon about it. The neighbor didn’t believe anyone would pay five bucks extra for a face. Burlon bet the neighbor that he would get the extra five bucks and, when he did, he got a bonus five bucks when the neighbor payed off the bet.

I am barely scratching the surface here - Kim told a bunch of stories, including one about Shoji Hamada and Bernard Leach’s visit to Western North Carolina in the 1950s. I’m not going to write it all up here, but I will say: don’t miss a chance to hear Kim talk should you get it!

(One opportunity that's coming up soon is the Woodfire NC Conference that’s taking place this June. Kim is participating in the conference; you can read about that here: The conference will be preceded by a number of events across the state, including some in Western North Carolina - read more about that here:

Kim brought a number of Catawba Valley pots with him and encouraged all of us to touch them and handle them. He talked about how Catawba Valley pots are known for being very thinly turned and lighter than you would expect and this was definitely the case. It was really a treat getting to examine these pots.

Thanks again to Kim, Briana, Molly, Adam and everyone at West Union Art Studios - and to everyone who came!

Tuesday, April 11, 2017

Northern Clay Center artist opportunities

John Britt shared this information about Northern Clay Center artist opportunities. NCC is located in Minneapolis, but these opportunities are open to artists outside of Minnesota. Deadline is this Friday, April 14th.

-Four emerging artists positions, one year, firing/materials stipend, representation in newsletter/sales gallery/NCECA Expo. Here’s a little more from the NCC website:

The Emerging Artist Residency program encompasses two unique fellowships, designed to provide up to four ceramic artists with an opportunity to be in residence for one year at Northern Clay Center, where they can develop their own work, as well as exchange ideas and knowledge with other ceramic artists.

Each residency recipient will have a shared, furnished studio space with 24/7 access to NCC’s facilities from September 1, 2017, to August 31, 2018. In addition to the workspace, each fellowship includes a materials and firing stipend, and professional development and enrichment opportunities through NCC’s education, exhibitions, and sales gallery programs, for qualified and interested fellows. A group exhibition featuring work produced during the fellowship period will take place in January 2019, at Northern Clay Center, at the conclusion of the grant period. Recipients have the opportunity to present a brief image talk about their work in conjunction with the exhibition.


-Up to $4000 for the Warren MacKenzie Advancement Award. Two awards made annually. Here’s a little more from the NCC website:

The WMAA, founded in 2014, provides an opportunity for students and emerging artists to continue their ceramic research and education for a period of up to twelve consecutive months within the grant year, further expanding their professional development. This award is available to current undergraduate or graduate students, recent graduates (within one year), or those who have completed a university-equivalent training in ceramics (including apprenticeships) within the year prior to the application deadline.

During the grant year, the recipients can research a new technique or process, study with a mentor or in an apprenticeship setting, travel to other ceramic art centers or institutions for classes and workshops, collaborate with artists of other media, and travel. Proposals to fund large capital equipment purchases will not be accepted. Between one and three cash awards will be made in 2017, up to $4,000 each, for projects taking place between May 1, 2017, and April 30, 2018. Recipients contribute project updates to NCC’s social media and are required to give a public presentation at their school or other institution. See updates from past recipients at

Clay Club on Wednesday in Morganton!

Clay Club is tomorrow at West Union Art Studios in Morganton!


When: 6-8 pm on Wednesday, April 12th

What: Kim Ellington presentation on Catawba Valley Pottery

We will have the usual potluck, so bring food to share. Clay Club is BYOB, so bring drink, too.

***Mitchell/Yancey county folks - if you’re interested in carpooling, let me know.***

Directions and more details here:

See you tomorrow!

Thursday, April 6, 2017

Opening for a ceramic artist at the Odyssey Co-Op in Asheville

Here are the details from Anne Jerman:

The Odyssey Co-Op Gallery in Asheville has an opening for a new member. We are a group of 25 clay artists and have a wonderful gallery on Clingman Avenue. Our opening comes in May and we are accepting applications now. If you are interested in becoming a member and showing your clay work in the River Arts District contact Diana Gillispie for more information at

Wednesday, April 5, 2017

Fundamentals of Glazing -The Basics (New HD Video)

Got a new video :

Shane Mickey Pottery & Showroom in Bakersville reopens with new artists on April 6th

Shane Mickey Pottery & Showroom will be open with regular hours starting this Thursday, April 6th. Shane has two new artists who are holding resident positions out at his main studio, Mac McCusker and Garrett Delooze. They will slowly come on board this summer. In addition, Galen Sedberry, Shaunna Lyons, Amy Waller and Jennifer Sigmon will be holding down the fort in the showroom. The showroom will have a larger selection of work this year so please stop by and check us out!

Shane Mickey Pottery & Showroom is located at 24 North Mitchell Avenue in Bakersville. Hours are 10-5 Thursday-Saturday (Tuesday-Saturday starting in mid-May) and 12-5 on Sundays. The showroom is closed on Mondays.

More info here:

Shane Mickey

Garrett DeLooze

Shaunna Lyons

Mac McCusker

Galen Sedberry

Amy Waller

Julie Wiggins and Po-Wen Liu opening this Saturday at In Tandem Gallery in Bakersville

Need something to do this Saturday? Love ceramics and construction?  
Like to digest good Italian snacks and wine/beer?  

Then this Saturday, April 8th from 5:00-8:00 is perfect for you!  At In Tandem Gallery in Bakersville, NC the season opening of ceramicists Julie Wiggins and Po-Wen Liu will take place.  
Doing a recent stint in Jingdezhen, China this past fall/winter, Julie and Po-Wen were able to absorb the cultural influence – the geography – and the local facilities to pursue and create unique lines of work; work we now have on display.
Julie will be giving a slide show about her experience at 6:00 in our new and expanded gallery area (we’re just finishing up a 600 sq ft addition – at least “almost finished”)
Looking forward to seeing you there!!

Tuesday, April 4, 2017

April Clay Club with Kim Ellington at West Union Art Studios in Morganton on April 12th

April Clay Club will be from 6-8 pm on Wednesday, April 12th at West Union Art Studios in Morganton. Thanks to Briana Blackwelder for organizing this Clay Club meeting and to West Union Art Studios for hosting us!

Kim Ellington will do a presentation about Catawba Valley Pottery, including bringing examples for us to see and touch in person.

Here’s a little about Kim from his website:

Kim Ellington is a Catawba Valley potter known for his rich alkaline glazed, wood-fired stoneware. Ellington makes his home in the community of Vale, North Carolina, where the use of local clays, ash glaze and groundhog kilns began in the early 19th century and continues through his work today. His adaptation of and proficiency in these time-honored techniques has resulted in his pottery being represented in museums, private collections and ceramic exhibitions throughout the country.

We will have the usual potluck, so bring food to share. Clay Club is BYOB, so bring drink, too.

West Union Art Studios is located at 113 West Union Street in Morganton. Google maps will get you there:

***Mitchell/Yancey folks - I am going and have room for carpoolers - let me know if you're interested. If Asheville or other area folks want to carpool, let me know and I will put people in touch.***

Questions? Contact Briana at You can also contact me at or at 828-467-1183.

See you next Wednesday!

Monday, April 3, 2017

Light My Fire

2 Ransom B-3 burners for sale, $200 for both. In excellent shape. Sold only as a pair. Will gift wrap in newsprint.

(Axner lists the B-3 for $169 and Axner is usually cheaper than Ward.)

Burners were used in a raku kiln, some while ago,  fired with natural gas, but orifices easily changed for propane if needed.  

Perfect for a raku or small gas kiln.

Henry Pope

Sunday, April 2, 2017

7th Annual Madison County Potters Market on April 8th

7th Annual Madison County Potters Market, Saturday, April, 8, 2017, 9AM - 4PM

Marshall High Studios, Blannahassett Island, Marshall, NC 28753

Exhibiting Potters - Becca Floyd, Becky and Steve Lloyd, Julie Covington, Barry Rhodes, Joey Sheehan, Josh Copus, Jim and Shirl Parmentier, Rob Pulleyn, Richard Hensley, Shane Mickey, Kristin Schoonover, Jennifer Mecca, Richard Gruchalla/Carrin Rosetti, Nancy Green, Shadow May, David Grant, Courtney Martin, Maggie Kocher, Mark and Huynh Mai Fitzgerald, Matt Jones, Matt Shiemann, Amelia Stamps

Free Admission

Thursday, March 30, 2017

Summer Workshops At Odyssey ClayWorks

Pristine Porcelain Pros with Taylor Robenalt & Kyungmin Park, May 22-26

Historical Forms, Contemporary Myths with Gabriel Kline & Anja Bartles, May 29- June 2

Demystifying Form: Clay Play And the Teapot with Fong Choo, June 5- 9

Cob Construction with Cayce Kolstad & Wes Thompson, August 7-11

For more information, please visit

Wednesday, March 29, 2017

Invitation to participate in May Clay Club

May Clay Club will be be hosted by Karen Speer in Marion on Wednesday, May 10th. We will have a program of PechaKucha-inspired presentations. PechaKucha is “a simple presentation format where you show 20 images, each for 20 seconds.” You can read more about the format on the website. (Karen pointed out to me that NCECA had a program of PechaKucha-style talks this year in Portland; they called it Blinc 20:20 and you can see the line-up of presentations here:

We are going to put fewer limits on our presentations. The only requirements are that the presentations last 5-7 minutes and be ceramics-related. “Ceramics-related” is intentionally vague - you are encouraged to interpret that broadly: your favorite ceramic artist (dead or alive); a technique you’ve researched or mastered; something related to industrial or commercial ceramics; a museum you’ve visited; a historical topic you’ve researched - really *anything* related to ceramics. Everyone is welcome to participate - you don’t need to be a professional artist to share something that interests you.

Karen has a digital projector available for us to use, but you don’t have to use it. If you do present images, you are not bound by the PechaKucha 20-second rule - you can present them however you want as long as the presentation lasts 5-7 minutes.

Send me an email ( if you’re interested or want more information!

Monday, March 27, 2017

Mica Gallery in Bakersville reopens April 6th!

Mica reopens! After a long winter’s nap, downtown Bakersville, NC re-awakens as Mica throws open its doors in full bloom with wonderful surprises.

Mica, a cooperative gallery of fine contemporary craft, begins its sixth season with newest member, Robbie Bell of Speckled Dog Pottery. Robbie has had a studio for functional pottery in Bakersville for five years and is organist and choirmaster for Trinity Episcopal Church in Spruce Pine.

In addition, Mica’s newest offerings include the work of Marita Strauss’ jewelry and Katherine McCarty’s oil paintings. And during the months of April and May as a special surprise to celebrate Mother’s Day and the joy of spring, a garden gift will be included in each purchase, as well as an opportunity to sign up for the drawing of a Mica gift certificate, with the drawing taking place the Saturday before Mother’s Day.

Beginning April 4th, Mica, located on Mitchell Avenue, opens Thursdays through Saturdays from 10 – 5 and Sundays from 12 – 5; with stunning work by 19 local artists, including furniture, sculpture, wearables, jewelry, and, of course, functional pottery. Mica is a must see destination for those who appreciate the handmade. Stop by, meet an artist, and celebrate spring!

37 N. Mitchell Ave.
Bakersville, NC

Wednesday, March 22, 2017

Springtime Pottery Pop-Up in Asheville this Saturday

Springtime Pottery Pop-Up at the Asheville Food Park from 9-4 this Saturday, March 25th. The Asheville Food Park is at 219 Amboy Road, across from Carrier Park.

Details in the flyer and here:

Tuesday, March 21, 2017

20th Annual Catawba Valley Pottery and Antiques Festival this Saturday in Hickory

From the Catawba Valley Pottery and Antiques Festival website:

2017 marks the 20th Annual Catawba Valley Pottery and Antiques Festival. Its goal was and continues to be, showcasing the history of Catawba Valley alkaline glazed stoneware and the potters who continually produce this traditional utilitarian ware. Since most potters utilize wood-fired kilns at home sites, information about sales was tenuous, with customers relying on word-of-mouth or post cards. The CVP&AF provided an annual sale where pottery made in Catawba Valley, could be purchased. Over the years, development and growth have allowed the Festival to include potters from across the state and the South, as well as dealers offering historical pottery and antiques, providing a context for understanding the history and use of pottery in the South.

The Festival is a juried event, and will be held on Saturday, March 25, 2017, at the Hickory Metro Convention Center in Hickory, NC. More than 115 potters and vendors will offer their wares and antiques. Items include historical pottery, textiles, baskets, furniture and miniature items; with contemporary potters selling items ranging from coffee mugs to amazing works of art.

Along with the festival, Saturday includes special programming featuring pottery videos, demonstrations and an annual lecture presented by a special guest.

The CVP&AF is a non-profit event benefiting the Catawba County Historical Association in Newton, and the North Carolina Pottery Center in Seagrove. More than $500,000 has been donated to the institutions over the past 19 years. The primary fund-raiser is the Friday night preview party, which offers guests an early buying opportunity, along with a Southern supper.

The Festival runs from 9:00am to 5:00pm, on Saturday; tickets are purchased at the door and are $6.00 for adults, $2.00 for children ages 3 to 12.

Get all the details, including a list of participants, here:

(Thanks to Lanny Pelletier for the reminder on Facebook!)

Monday, March 20, 2017

Arts incubator space planned for Woodfin, North Carolina

Here’s the news item from the Ashvegas website (Woodfin is just north of Asheville):

The town of Woodfin is planning to open a new arts incubator space called River Arts North. Town manager Jason Young, during a meeting of the Asheville Area Riverfront Redevelopment Commission last week, said the town had a “handshake agreement” on a location for the space, which the town is calling River Arts North. Young said the idea is to offer affordable space for artists getting priced out of the fast-developing River Arts District in Asheville. Young declined to offer any more details, saying that the town board has yet to take a formal vote on the project.


Friday, March 17, 2017

Free clay in Saluda, North Carolina


Here are the details from Lucinda Pittman:

HURRY...Limited time Offer...gotta move...Free Clay...Highwater White Earthenware...cone 06-02...ready to recycle...bags and bags...come get ALL or Lucy at

Thursday, March 16, 2017

Promised WNC jobs going to Minnesota after Yancey County ceramics business closes

Appalachian Terroir, the business that also included Crimson Laurel Gallery and Smoky Mountain Pottery, was supposed to create 47-50 jobs in Yancey County. This was a big deal in this small rural county in Western North Carolina, which is designated a Tier 1 county by the state. This designation indicates that Yancey County’s economic well-being is among the most distressed in North Carolina.

The jobs were supposed to pay an average of $45,000/year and were highly touted by local officials when Appalachian Terroir announced its opening in Micaville just a year ago. The owners sought public funding assistance to locate their business in Yancey County, but it's unclear whether any was provided.

Now that Appalachian Terroir is closing, it looks like at least some of these jobs are going to Minnesota. Deneen Pottery in St. Paul, Minnesota has this announcement on their website:

My name is Niles Deneen and I’m excited to introduce you to my family’s business, Deneen Pottery. We were founded in 1972 and for the past 20 years we have specialized in creating custom stoneware with a Glaze Engraved™ medallion for a variety of customers all over the United States. Our work is very similar to what you have been getting from Appalachian Terroir, which is one of the main reasons why we are now introducing ourselves to you.

Appalachian Terroir has made special arrangements with my family’s company, in order to continue to provide you with a quality American made product as they, unfortunately, have to close their doors. Although we are saddened to lose a fellow manufacturer – we trust that our excellent customer service and premier craftsmanship will be a suitable substitute.

Read the complete announcement here:

More about Appalachain Terroir:

Appalachian Terroir and Crimson Laurel Gallery signs taken down

The end of the line for Appalachian Terroir

Yancey Times Journal on Crimson Laurel Gallery and related ceramic businesses moving to Micaville

More on Crimson Laurel Gallery and Appalachian Terroir news

Crimson Laurel Gallery moving to Micaville

Wednesday, March 15, 2017

Meeting in Asheville on affordable housing solutions for artists, craftspeople and makers

Here are the details from the Center for Craft, Creativity & Design announcement:

On March 22 from 7-8:30 pm, The Center for Craft, Creativity & Design (CCCD) and Asheville Area Chamber of Commerce will host a public meeting on affordable housing solutions for artists, craftspeople and makers. The meeting will provide the public with an opportunity to engage with and learn from Artspace, a national non-profit organization based in Minneapolis, MN that specializes in creating, owning and operating affordable housing and studio/business space for artists and creative sector businesses.

The public meeting is the capstone to a three-day visit that will introduce the community to the Artspace leadership team. The visit kicks-off a year-long feasibility assessment and market study to determine the viability of an appropriately sized mixed-use affordable housing development for artists and creative sector businesses. The process is being guided by a leadership group that includes Asheville Mayor Esther Manheimer and community leaders from The Center for Craft, Creativity & Design, Asheville Area Chamber of Commerce, MHAworks, City of Asheville, Community Foundation of Western North Carolina, UNC Asheville, and HomeTrust Bank.

Artspace is positioned to bring together the region's creative sector, including arts organizations, artists and makers, through a community engagement process that results in actionable data for the purpose of developing affordable housing, studio space, and resources. The project represents a high impact investment that will strengthen the arts and cultural sector of the region while also promoting other types of economic development, such as talent attraction and retention.

"Artspace is at the forefront of the movement to develop affordable housing for artists and owns numerous projects around the state and country. We are thrilled to bring their expertise to the area," says Stephanie Moore, Executive Director of CCCD. "Creatives benefit when they're co-located together in spaces that are affordable and accessible. We need to support smart opportunities like this to ensure that Asheville's creative sector continues to thrive."

Artspace begins each project with a comprehensive feasibility assessment including a market study to quantify a community's creative sector, in-depth stakeholder engagement, and an analysis of potential development sites. The result is actionable data that can translate to appropriately-sized affordable mixed-use housing developments for artists and the creative sector. "If we can have more usable data about the arts and culture community, the possibility of more housing that will keep artists in Asheville, and identification of viable sites for this kind of development, that would be a win on all fronts," said Kit Cramer, President/CEO of the Asheville Chamber.

Date and Time: Wednesday, March 22, 2017, 7 - 8:30 pm
Location: The Center for Craft, Creativity & Design, 67 Broadway Street, Asheville, NC 28801
Parking: Complimentary parking is available at HomeTrust Bank, located at 10 Woodfin Street, Asheville, NC 28801 .

To learn more and RSVP for the event, visit