Archive for the ‘NC Pottery Center’ Category

After All This Time – A Shopping Trip to Seagrove, NC, To The Celebration Of Seagrove Potters

Tuesday, December 8th, 2015

It’s been a long time since I first went to Seagrove, NC, and came home with pottery to add to our pottery collection, but on Nov. 20, 2015, Linda and I were headed to the Gala evening of the 8th Celebration of Seagrove Potters in Seagrove. It’s about a 4 1/2 – 5 hour trip north so Linda managed to get a little sleep after working a 12 hour shift Thursday night. By the time we got to the Gala, she was working on a lot of hours with little sleep. That’s how bad she wanted to go on this trip.

The other nice thing about this trip was that we planned an overnight stay in Asheboro, NC, about 12 miles north of Seagrove so we wouldn’t have to make the trip home another 4 1/2 – 5 hours after the Gala. This also gave us the opportunity to visit the Celebration on Saturday – with the masses – and then drive home during daylight hours.

We met up with Zelda Ravenel, our Super Blog Guru & Graphics person, who came down from Western Virginia to join us at the Gala and Celebration. She was just our Blog Guru, but after recovering our blog Carolina Arts Unleashed, which had been corrupted and then wiped out by our Internet server, I added Super to her title. This was her first trip into the world of Seagrove pottery. And, you wouldn’t be reading this blog I’ve written on for years without the recovery Zelda made happen

We arrived at Historic Luck’s Cannery in Seagrove, official home of the Celebration of the Seagrove Potters, just before the 6pm opening, after we passed the entrance – as did many other drivers in the dark (more lighting please). When we walked in the door there was a very long line of serious looking pottery collectors. I mean these people came to bid on the rare one-of-a-kind collaborative works created by Seagrove potters being auctioned and to have first chance to buy from over 75 local potters before the hordes arrived on Saturday and Sunday. And, I’m sure like me, they were also there to enjoy the food, drink and live music being offered by Bold Music. The food was fantastic as was the music, but I was the driver – so only one drink.

1115seagrove-celebration-auction-callers
The men calling the numbers. Frank Neef standing to the back. Photo by Zelda Ravenel

1115seagrove-celebration-auction1
A view of the bidding crowd.

1115seagrove-celebration-auction2
Another view of the bidding crowd.

When the auction was over, those folks, made up of highly competitive collectors, bid $8,150 on these collaborative works. Unlike some art auction fundraisers, these folks bid more than the normal value of similar works due to the fact that there wouldn’t be any other works like the ones offered. Most art auction fundraisers attract folks looking to pay under market prices for works donated. They don’t seem to grasp the intention of fundraisers. And Seagrove potters are asked to donate to a lot of fundraisers throughout the area and the state of North Carolina – all the time. It’s nice to see the public respond so well to a fundraiser which benefits their own community.

1115celebration-Frank-Neef-and-Paul-Ray
One of the works being auctioned by Frank Neef and Paul Ray. Neef was also acting as emcee for the auction and he worked on several other collaborative works being auctioned.

The live auction itself is well worth the admission of the Gala as some of the items saw some heated bidding which resulted in final figures that were staggering, but great for the potters and for the audience to witness.

During breakfast Saturday morning at the hotel we stayed we realized that most of the other folks at the hotel were at the Gala and a few were still talking about their luck in being the winning bidder at the Gala auction. The auction was the buzz of the morning and most, like us, were headed back for more pottery buying.

But before we get to Saturday and leave the Gala it should be mentioned that the Gala was also the best time to meet or catch up with all the Seagrove potters as some keep their potteries open on Saturday for folks who also want to visit the potteries where they can see more works by their favorite potters. After all, they can only bring so much to their booths at the cannery. So Friday night was also a great time for me to catch up with potters who I may interact with on Facebook and by e-mail but haven’t seen face-to-face in awhile. And for me, that’s the main reason for returning to Seagrove. I love the pottery they make, but I care more about keeping the friendship of some of those potters in my collection.  That’s always been one of the main incentives for doing Carolina Arts – the artists, art administrators, gallery owners, and others working in the visual art community in the Carolinas. I’m not getting rich doing an arts publication, but I’ve been enriched by the people I have met and many I have yet to meet. As strange as it seems, some of the best people I’ve never met, are good friends and one day I might meet them. Of course maybe one of the reasons we’re friends is that we haven’t met yet. I have to think about that one.

And just to remind you that I’m not getting too mushy in my old age – some of the worst people I’ve met or know are also in this same art community. Not so much the Seagrove community, but the Carolina art community. Some would stab you in the back for a fistful of dollars in funding.

OK – let’s get back to Saturday morning, Oct. 21, 2015, the first day of the 8th Annual Celebration of Seagrove Potters.

We learned at the Friday night Gala that Mark Heywood would be at their gallery at Whynot Pottery, while Meredith Heywood would be working at the Celebration. They are just one of many pottery husband and wife teams in Seagrove. After Zelda had enjoyed the Friday night Gala I wanted her to see one of the actual potteries – where the magic happens. Once we got in the shop she started taking photos of works she knew would fit into some of her friends home decor, but the highlight of this visit came when we visited the studio and Mark gave us a real tour of the process involved. Linda and I have seen it before but there is always something new to see or learn and in this case find a gem along the way.

Mark was showing us some things about glazes and pointed to a small jar which had a blue glaze they used to do in the past but had to stop as it didn’t work well with the new firing technique they liked – it turned that blue glaze a muddy gray. As he went on about some other parts of the process I could see that Linda couldn’t keep her hands off that little jar. After about ten more minutes of Linda admiring that jar I told Mark he better sell her that jar so we could get on with the tour or we would be here all day. Zelda was just eating it all up. It is an amazing process of turning clay into fine art objects or beautiful functional ware. I promised her I’d take her to One Eared Cow Glass in Columbia, SC, one day, to see the Cowboys make amazing works out of molten sand.

1115seagrove-celebration-whynot-jar
That sweet little jar from Whynot Pottery.

After Whynot, I figured it was time to get back to the cannery – by now the first shift of the crowd might be moving on and we might find a parking space. And just as we got there cars were coming out – heading to pottery festival number 2 or out to individual potteries around Seagrove. We found a not too far out of the way parking space and as we walked in we ran info folks carrying several plastic bags in each hand full of pottery, headed to their cars. The funniest scene I saw that day was a very small woman leading a very large young man carrying a very large pot – bigger than she was – probably to see if he was going to be able to fit it into her car.

Now this was my fourth trip to a Celebration of Seagrove Potters, and the last two were not great in one respect. Due to our financial situation during the last two visits I had to watch other happy folks carry those bags of pottery and I wasn’t going to be carrying any. I was on a Shoestring Publishing Company budget – which was gas and food money. This time I didn’t have to go home empty handed. I can tell you this – there is nothing more frustrating than looking at one fabulous work after another – all reasonably priced and not being able to make any of them yours. I also felt bad as many of the potters knew I had a pottery collection. All I could think was that they were thinking that I didn’t see anything I liked, when it was a case of my eyes were filled with – I want that, and that and that too. It’s not a great feeling.

1115seagrove=celebration-mug-keith-Martindale
Here’s another work we purchased during the event from Keith Martindale Pottery.

1115seagrove-celebration-potts-pottery
And this one from Potts pottery is now in our collection. For info call 336/873-9660. Looks like we had a thing for blue during this trip.

Once we got in it was the usual mob scene. Linda had seen it before, but Zelda was wide eyed – there were a lot of people moving like a river from booth to booth. We got there just in time for Eck McCanless’ (Eck McCanless Pottery) demo which Zelda wanted to see how he got all those different clays to blend together in what seemed like a controlled manner. She had seen the finished products the night before. The demos are really something to watch. The potters work their magic with such ease right before your eyes that it seems like a trick that must involve some sleight of hand – like putting a slab of clay on the wheel – distracting the crowd and then pulling a finished piece from under the table.

1115seagrove-celebration-eck-McCanless-demo2
Eck McCanless of Eck McCanless Pottery doing a demo on Saturday. Photo by Zelda Ravenel.

1115seagrove-celebration-eck-macCanless-demo-pot
One result from the Eck McCanless demo. Photo by Zelda Ravenel.

1115seagrove-celebration-eck-mccanless-pottery
A view of finished works – carved agateware from Eck McCanless Pottery. Photo from Eck McCanless Pottery.

At lunch time I got to have my all time favorite – a box of flavorful veggies and noodles from Pacific Rim Noodles from Asheboro, NC. I’ve had their lunch offering every time I’ve gone and hope to every time I go in the future. I always ask for extra veggies and I get them. My mouth is drooling right now.

After getting that warm feeling in my tummy, it was time to make one more round and see what more was going to go home with us. We found a couple to more works that we made ours, but I still had to hold off on a few things – mostly because I waited too long to get what I wanted. Next time I’ll know to do all my shopping at the Gala.

Soon it was time to head home. Zelda had a good time and I think she’d look forward to going again. Linda and I had a good time – we were tired – she was really tired from a couple of days without a lot of sleep. Zelda headed back to Western Virginia and we headed back to South Carolina. The ride home was good – we listened to Clemson win another football game and had a great dinner in Florence, SC.

I’ve got some images of pottery we saw, pottery we now own, and a few of the events, but none of them can come close to the experience of being there. I could have taken more, but… And, that’s what all this is about. I go to these events I write about because I enjoy them and hope others will too, once they learn about them. I’m not trying to share my experience through words and pictures – I’m not that good of a writer or photographer to even come close to doing that. Believe me, you’re being short changed if that’s what you’re trying to do by reading this. I want you to go yourself. They’re going to have another Celebration next year the weekend before Thanksgiving (that’s Nov. 18-20, 2016). Make plans now – especially if you’re going to stay in Asheboro – their hotels fill up fast with pottery lovers from all over the Carolinas and beyond. I’m not going to tell anyone when I’m going again. I want to make sure I’ll be getting all the pots I want at the Gala next time.

1115celebration-frank-neef-pottery
Works from Frank Neef Pottery.

1115seagrove-celebration-lucks-ware
Face mug from Luck’s Ware pottery. For info call 336/879-3261.

1115celebration-ray-pottery
Works from Ray Pottery. My next purchase from Seagrove will be from this pottery.

1115celebration-snowhill-pottery&tile
Tile from Snowhill Pottery & Tileworks. For info call 336/301-6681.

1115celebration-studio-Touya
Works from Studio Touya.

Of course you don’t have to wait another year, some of the potteries will be having special Christmas events next weekend on Dec. 12, 2015 – visit (www.discoverSeagrove.com) for details. And, on Apr. 16-17, 2016, you can attend the 8th annual Celebration of Spring in Seagrove, for kiln openings and a studio tours of individual potteries. Did someone say road trip? And if you’re not one for crowds – you can plan your own trip anytime – just check the Discover Seagrove website to make sure folks will be open as some potteries kind of slow down or even shut down during the winter months.

1115celebration-whynot-pottery
Tile from Whynot Pottery.

1115seagrove-celebration-whynot-pottery--tiles
This is a photo of tiles at the Whynot Pottery’s booth. The giraffe in the top row is a product of Acacia Art Tiles, a project of Meredith Heywood and her sister Lee Lewis who has passed away. Meredith is producing the giraffe tiles using an image her sister designed to keep a part of that partnership alive. There’s one there in row two and row three. What a great way to remember someone.

1115seagrove-celebration-ben-owen-3-big-pot
A large pot from Ben Owen Pottery.

1115seagrove-celebration-bulldog
Works from Bulldog Pottery.

1115seagrove-celebration-jlk-jewelry2
Works from JLK Jewelry at Jugtown.

The great thing about the Fall Celebration of Seagrove Potters is that it brings a lot of the area’s potters together in one place like a pottery mall. You don’t have to travel so far to see lots of different kinds of pottery, shop for the price that’s right for you, and meet the potters. If you’re looking for more of an adventure, the Spring Kiln Openings are for you. Traveling around the rolling lush hills of the Seagrove area is nice and you get the see the pottery operations. It’s your choice, but it’s a choice you should make. Don’t sit around reading about other people’s trips.

P.S. I was listening to Don Henley’s new CD, Cass County while writing most of this. It fit right in with my feelings about Seagrove – the center of pottery in the Carolinas. You know Henley – he’s one of those Eagles who has a sharp tongue about modern life, but is just an old Texas country boy.

Oh, and I’ve got one more thing to add. I’ve included a photo of what is NOT the North Carolina Pottery Center in Seagrove. This used to be called the Museum of North Carolina Traditional Pottery, which is not really much of a museum – it’s more like a store with pottery on metal shelves. I thought the pottery wars were over in Seagrove but I guess some are still fighting. They renamed this place trying to confuse people looking for the real Pottery Center. Here’s a photo of how it looks. I hope you notice the difference.

1115celebration-not-the-pottery-center
This is NOT the NC Pottery Center in Seagrove, NC

NCPC-entrance
This IS the one and only NC Pottery Center in Seagrove, NC – don’t be fooled.

The Fifth Annual Celebration of Spring in Seagrove, NC, Takes Place – Apr. 20 & 21, 2013

Friday, April 19th, 2013

This weekend is the big 5th Annual Celebration of Spring in Seagrove, NC – a group kiln opening and tour – taking place Apr. 20 & 21, 2013. It’s the second best way to visit Seagrove and see as many potteries as you can – next to the fall Celebration of Seagrove Potters where they all come together in one place. Plus, I’m told that Spring time in Seagrove is like Spring time in Paris. I can’t remember who told me that, but I did hear it.

I’m going to give you the official PR, but first I want to put in a special plug for one of my favorite potteries – Whynot Pottery.

413whynot-opening-the-kiln-337x450

Mark and Meredith Heywood of Whynot Pottery will once again host Acacia Tile for their Mud and Suds event on Saturday Apr. 20, from 9-5pm and Sunday Apr. 21, from 11-4pm.

Mark and Meredith have been busy restocking the shelves and will have your favorite “hand crafted, homemade”, kiln cookies on hand for a quick munch.

Let me repeat for the hard of reading – hand crafted, homemade, kiln cookies….

Everyone knows regular cookies come from cardboard tubes bought at Wal-Mart. You put the precut “cookies” on a pan and put them in your oven – oh the joy. Like great pizza – great cookies are make in a kiln. And cookies sprinkled with potter ash – are the best.

Joining in on the fun on Saturday and sharing her talents is Laurie Abela of Abela Bodycare. Laurie is a long time soap maker and will bring her knowledge of soaps and bodycare to the show on Saturday.

This event coincides with: The Annual Seagrove Potters “Celebration of Spring Kiln Opening & Studio Tour”. I think of it as the Great Celebration of Meredith Heywood’s Kiln Baked Cookies, but that’s me. You can call it what you want, but I’m working on a future slice of pineapple upsidedown cake.

For more information you can call Whynot Pottery at 336/873-9276 or check their Facebook page at (https://www.facebook.com/whynotpotterywhynotnc).

OK – here’s the PR on all my other favorite potteries in Seagrove.

Celebration of Spring Kiln Openings & Studio Tours Takes Place in Seagrove, NC – April 20 & 21, 2013

Seagrove, NC…It’s a beautiful weekend to come out to the freshly blooming spring countryside and leisurely browse, shop and experience a 200-year-old tradition, see the process, develop and renew relationships with the potters of Seagrove.

A large variety of events are scheduled throughout the weekend, held at individual shops, including, but not limited to – loads of beautiful new pots fresh from the kilns. Stop at any participating shop as you come into Seagrove to pick up a map of the tour. You can download a pdf of participating shops, hours, and a map from Discover Seagrove or Celebration of Seagrove Potters and be sure to like us and follow us on Facebook for updates and special offers at Celebration of Seagrove Potters.

Special events include:

Ben Owen Pottery will have pottery demonstrations by Ben Owen III periodically throughout the weekend.

413celebration-ben-Owen-III
Works by Ben Owen III

Bulldog Pottery – Bruce Gholson and Samantha Henneke will have new vases and tiles, and serve light refreshments.

Caldwell-Hohl Artworks will feature new work, garden art, studio tours and light refreshments.

Crystal King & King’s Pottery wood-fired kiln unloaded at 10am Saturday at Kings Pottery. Numbered collaborative 3-faced jugs & special animal sculptures by Crystal will be available.

Donna Craven Pottery is celebrating with new spring themed pots, refreshments and door prizes.

Eck McCanless Pottery is offering visitors the opportunity to get their hands dirty with hands-on turning and Agateware carving demonstrations.

From the Ground Up – with guest potter, Melanie Hutchins, will offer new work by Michael, Levi & Chelsea Mahan. Horse hair firing in the afternoons. A.M. organic scones & coffee, leek & potato soup for lunch.

413celebration-from-the-ground-up-335x450
Work by Michael Mahan

Great White Oak Gallery is celebrating spring with demonstrations and refreshments.

Hickory Hill Pottery will feature new glaze combinations as well as door prizes and refreshments. Come join in the fun!

Keith Martindale Pottery will offer demonstrations and refreshments.

413celebration-keith-martindale-pottery
Work by Keith Martindale

Lantern Hill Pottery will have refreshments and doorprizes.

Latham’s Pottery will have pottery demonstrations and refreshments.

Michele Hastings and Jeff Brown Pottery present new collaborative work, fresh from the latest firings, and will be demonstrating throughout the weekend.

413celebration-jeff-michele-july
Works by Michele Hastings and Jeff Brown

Old Gap Pottery will have brushwork decorating and throwing demonstrations along with morning coffee and biscotti.

Studio Touya will feature the latest wood fired pots and offer refreshments.

Tom Gray Pottery – In addition to new pottery pieces, Tom will also have a selection of his handmade kitchen knives.

Whynot Pottery & Acacia Art Tile is Celebrating Spring with “Mud & Suds”, with special guest Laurie Abela of Abela Bodycare. Also, offering refreshments (kiln baked cookies) and tours of their work building and kilns.

413celebration-whynot-pottery
Works from Whynot Pottery

The following pottery shops; Southern Spirits @ A. Teague Village, Avery Pottery & Tileworks, Blue Hen, BlueStone, Chris Luther, Chrisco, Daniel Johnston, Dean and Martin, DirtWorks, Fireshadow, Frank Neef, JLK Jewelry/Jugtown, Luck’s Ware, McNeill’s, O’Quinn, Ray, Seagrove Stoneware, Smith and Snowhill Pottery and Tileworks are also participating in the Celebration of Spring. Each shop will have something special for visitors to enjoy.

The Seagrove Area Potters Association (SAPA) is a group of remarkable clay artists united to showcase the traditional and contemporary pottery of the historic Seagrove community. The goal is to maintain the authenticity of Seagrove pottery by working together in community efforts to promote the historical, educational and artistic aspects encountered while visiting Seagrove, and to draw customers to the individual shops to have a firsthand Seagrove experience.

For further information visit Discover Seagrove (http://www.discoverseagrove.com/) or Celebration of Seagrove Potters (http://www.celebrationofseagrovepotters.com/).

P.S. I’d be neglect in my duties if I didn’t suggest that while you’re in Seagrove – stop by the NC Pottery Center and see their Tea Pot exhibit. It’s located in downtown Seagrove – you can’t miss it.

North Carolina Pottery Center in Seagrove, NC, Has Remarkable Success with Fundraiser

Tuesday, September 11th, 2012

ncpclogo-313x450

The North Carolina Pottery Center’s recent auction raised over $50,000, almost double last year’s total. One long term supporter of NCPC wrote, “The Pottery Center provided everyone a fun, festive evening and an opportunity to support a state treasure. It was indeed ‘the place’ to be.

Held at Leland Little’s Auction and Estate Sales in Hillsborough, NC, the evening began with patrons selecting a handmade plate donated by a talented North Carolina potter. Next up was a delicious gourmet supper of food prepared by five of the Triangle’s most celebrated chefs, which everyone thoroughly enjoyed.

712ncpc-plates

The satisfied diners were then invited to bid on pots donated by many of the state’s best-known potters, and spirited rivalries erupted from all sides of the hall, as Leland Little enthusiastically raised the bidding ever-higher on each successive item.

Combined with the Pottery Center’s recent Z. Smith Reynolds grant to help fund an Executive Director’s position, the results from the auction clearly indicate wide appreciation for all that NCPC does to promote awareness of North Carolina’s world-class pottery heritage through exhibitions, education, outreach, and visitor service. Located in Seagrove, NC, just south of Asheboro, NC, it’s a great tourist destination, and serves as the perfect start to a visit of area potteries.

If you’ve never been to the Pottery Center, or haven’t been for a while, perhaps you are sufficiently intrigued to make a trip to Seagrove to visit this sweet museum that is the backbone of this fascinating community of potters.

Thank you to our Auction Sponsors: First Bank, Leland Little Auction and Estate Sales, Shelton Vineyards, Katie B. Morris, Progress Energy, Carolina Arts, Gardner Heating and Air, Kimberly Woodard, Community One, Hans Klaussner Foundation and The Courier Tribune.

NCPC-entrance

The mission of the North Carolina Pottery Center is to promote public awareness of and appreciation for the history, heritage, and ongoing tradition of pottery making in North Carolina. The Center is located at 233 East Avenue in Seagrove, NC. Hours of operation are Tue. – Sat., 10am – 4pm.

For more information, please call 336/873-8430 or go to (www.ncpotterycenter.org).

The Best Fundraiser Event of the Summer – a Dinner and Auction for the NC Pottery Center in Seagrove, NC, is Almost Here – Aug. 23, 2012

Sunday, August 5th, 2012

ncpclogo-313x450

If you’re a regular follower of Carolina Arts, you know we love the NC Pottery Center in Seagrove, NC. It’s a fantastic facility, a real asset to NC’s cultural community, and we wish we had something like it in South Carolina, but we don’t.

But…the big problem is that under this economy and with a push form the right to reduce government spending in exchange for tax breaks – funding for the arts is hard to come by, but the Pottery Center and its supporters don’t mind earning it the old fashion way – with hard work and creative thinking. They could just say – please give us some money, but where’s the fun in that? So they keep coming up with ideas like the Potter’s Palette, where they got potters to paint on canvas and auctioned them off as a unique art treasure and this new idea – Fill Your Plate. But you can read all about that in their press release about this fundraiser.

Give them your support – they deserve it.

Here’s the PR:

North Carolina Pottery Center in Seagrove, NC, Presents 13th Annual Auction, “Going, Going, Gone to Pots”

The North Carolina Pottery Center in Seagrove, NC, has worked some extraordinary culinary magic for their upcoming auction. This year there will be an unprecedented, star-studded, pre-auction supper, called, “Fill Your Plate,” with food prepared by several of the Triangle’s best chefs, and served on plates made by North Carolina potters.

712ncpc-plates-450x249

The chefs include Ashley Christensen of Beasley’s Chicken + Honey, Chuck’s, and Poole’s Diner in Raleigh, NC; Andrea Reusing of Lantern in Chapel Hill, NC; Amy Tornquist, of Watts Grocery in Durham, NC; Aaron Vandermark of Panciuto in Hillsborough, NC; and Brendan Cox of the recently opened Oakleaf in Pittsboro, NC. Never before has such a caste been assembled, these chefs are truly amazing, several have won or been nominated for the prestigious James Beard Awards, and with such gastronomic wizards on board, it’s bound to be a bountiful banquet!

This will be the Pottery Center’s 13th Annual Auction, “Going, Going, Gone to Pots,” and it will be held on Thursday, Aug. 23, 2012, at Leland Little Auction & Estate Sales in Hillsborough, NC.

Before supper, each participant in “Fill Your Plate” will select a handmade plate which they can take home with them after supper. The pleasure of combining fine pottery and fine dining is something potters have known for a very long time, North Carolina’s ceramic history is filled with pickling jars, buttermilk pitchers, casserole dishes, pie dishes, and this event will remind patrons of the special relationship between food, pots, and potters. It’s going to be a memorable meal. Supper starts at 6pm.

712ncpc-auction-hitomi-shibata-298x450
Work by Hitomi Shibata in the auction

But the evening’s fun only begins with the feasting. There will be a silent auction featuring pots generously donated by over 70 of NC’s finest potters, as well as many enticing non-pottery items, like wonderful holiday stays at the beach, or in the mountains.

After supper the live auction will take place starting at 7:30pm, highlighting several very special pots, antique and new, made by the best-known potters of NC, and also some unique pottery “Experiences,” like making pots for an afternoon with Ben Owen, decorating plates with Alex Matisse, and helping Daniel Johnston and Mark Hewitt fire and unload their kilns. You’ll also be able to bid on having lunch and a private museum tour with Larry Wheeler, Director of the North Carolina Museum of Art, and a two-hour privately conducted golf-cart tour of the NC Zoo!

712ncpc-auction-ken-sedberry-298x450
Work by Ken Sedberry in the auction

The North Carolina Pottery Center promotes awareness of North Carolina’s world-class pottery heritage through exhibitions, education, outreach, and visitor service. Located in Seagrove, just south of Asheboro, NC, it’s a great tourist destination, and serves as the perfect start to a visit of area potteries.

All in all, this year’s auction sounds unforgettable, so be sure to attend, and pass the word along to your friends. The cost of “Fill Your Plate” will be $75 per person, for which you’ll get the mouthwatering meal and a plate to take home, which is quite a bargain! Alternatively, if you’d like to attend only the auction, admission is $10.

712ncpc-auction-kyle-carpenter-323x450
Work by Kyle Carpenter in the auction

The NC Pottery Center wishes to thank its sponsors for this event: First Bank, Leland Little Auction and Estate Sales, Shelton Vineyards, Katie B. Morris, Progress Energy, Carolina Arts, Gardner Heating and Air, Kimberly Woodard, Community One, Hans Klaussner Foundation and The Courier Tribune.

Auction items will be online for viewing and phone bidding will be available, see details at (www.ncpotterycenter.org), (www.llauctions.com), and (www.auctionzip.com).

NCPC-entrance

The NC Pottery Center is now selling raffle tickets, at $10 each or 3 for $25. Choose which raffle package you are interested in of purchase tickets for both. You do not have to be present to win – drawing will take place Aug. 23, 2012. Tickets are available by phone at 336/873-8430, at the NC Pottery Center or at Westmoore Pottery in Seagrove, NC.

One item is a Pierced Plate, with a retail value of $600. The plate is red earthenware with a yellow slip background. The plate was made and decorated by Mary Farrell of Westmoore Pottery. Another item is a vase, with a retail value of $550. The vase was wood fired, salt glaze with slip trailing and ash glaze, made by Alex Matisse. The third item is an Umstead Gift Certificate, with a $320 value, for an overnight stay in a premier king room with breakfast for two in Herons Restaurant.

You can see the raffle items at this link (http://www.ncpotterycenter.org/2012-auction.html).

Please contact NCPC directly for Tickets and Reservations by calling 336/873-8430. More information about the Auction and Supper is posted on NCPC’s website at (www.ncpotterycenter.org).

The North Carolina Pottery Center in Seagrove, NC, Receives Z. Smith Reynolds Grant

Wednesday, July 18th, 2012

ncpclogo-313x450

The Board of Directors and Staff, on behalf of our Membership, are pleased to announce that the North Carolina Pottery Center in Seagrove, NC, has been awarded a grant from the Zachary Smith Reynolds Foundation, Inc.  This special grant for $65,000 will be distributed over a two-year period and will serve as the core support for the installation of a new executive director.

The NCPC is very excited about this opportunity to begin a nationwide search for a new museum director. This is a remarkable accomplishment for the NCPC given the present economic climate. By finding the NCPC worthy of this financial award, the Trustees of the Z Smith Reynolds Foundation, Inc., have demonstrated their confidence in the museum to bring stability and economic development to the pottery communities of our state. In keeping with the mission of the NCPC, to promote and preserve our state’s continuing pottery traditions, this grant will bring us the leadership required to move it forward into new partnerships, resource sharing, increased educational offerings, greater exposure, on-going exciting exhibitions, workshops, and off-site events.

The Z. Smith Reynolds Foundation, Inc., was founded in 1936 and named as a memorial for the youngest son of the founder, R. J. Reynolds. In 1951 the foundation was increased by a trust from the uncle, William Neal Reynolds.   The Foundation, now comprised of the income from the ZSR Trust and the W. N. Reynolds Trust, has distributed grants to recipients of all 100 North Carolina counties, totaling more than $493 million. The NCPC is very honored to be one of the latest recipients of this prestigious award. This endorsement will provide the NCPC with valuable standing as it approaches a new future of vigorous partnerships targeted towards the promotion and preservation of our pottery and the arts.

NCPC-entrance

The mission of the North Carolina Pottery Center is to promote public awareness of and appreciation for the history, heritage, and ongoing tradition of pottery making in North Carolina.

The Center is located at 233 East Avenue in Seagrove, NC. Hours of operation are Tue. – Sat., 10am – 4pm.

712ncpc-plates

Also, don’t forget the Pottery Center will be hosting its 13th Annual Auction, “Going, Going, Gone to Pots,” on Thursday, Aug. 23, 2012, at Leland Little Auction & Estate Sales in Hillsborough, NC. This year there will be an unprecedented, star-studded, pre-auction supper, called, “Fill Your Plate,” with food prepared by several of the Triangle’s best chefs, and served on plates made by North Carolina potters. You can read all about it at this link.

For more information, please call 336/873-8430 or go to (www.ncpotterycenter.org).

Here’s a Heads Up on the Best Fundraiser Event of the Summer for the NC Pottery Center in Seagrove, NC – Aug. 23, 2012

Thursday, July 5th, 2012

If you’re a regular follower of Carolina Arts, you know we love the NC Pottery Center in Seagrove, NC. It’s a fantastic facility, a real asset to NC’s cultural community, and we wish we had something like it in South Carolina, but we don’t.

But…the big problem is that under this economy and with a push form the right to reduce government spending in exchange for tax breaks – funding for the arts is hard to come by, but the Pottery Center and its supporters don’t mind earning it the old fashion way – with hard work and creative thinking. They could just say – please give us some money, but where’s the fun in that? So they keep coming up with ideas like the Potter’s Palette, where they got potters to paint on canvas and auctioned them off as a unique art treasure and this new idea – Fill Your Plate. But you can read all about that in their press release about this fundraiser.

Give them your support – they deserve it.

Here’s the PR:

ncpclogo-313x450

North Carolina Pottery Center in Seagrove, NC, Presents 13th Annual Auction, “Going, Going, Gone to Pots”

The North Carolina Pottery Center in Seagrove, NC, has worked some extraordinary culinary magic for their upcoming auction. This year there will be an unprecedented, star-studded, pre-auction supper, called, “Fill Your Plate,” with food prepared by several of the Triangle’s best chefs, and served on plates made by North Carolina potters.

712ncpc-plates
Some of the plates donated for “Fill Your Plate”

The chefs include Ashley Christensen of Beasley’s Chicken + Honey, Chuck’s, and Poole’s Diner in Raleigh, NC; Andrea Reusing of Lantern in Chapel Hill, NC; Amy Tornquist, of Watts Grocery in Durham, NC; Aaron Vandermark of Panciuto in Hillsborough, NC; and Brendan Cox of the recently opened Oakleaf in Pittsboro, NC. Never before has such a caste been assembled, these chefs are truly amazing, several have won or been nominated for the prestigious James Beard Awards, and with such gastronomic wizards on board, it’s bound to be a bountiful banquet!

This will be the Pottery Center’s 13th Annual Auction, “Going, Going, Gone to Pots,” and it will be held on Thursday, Aug. 23, 2012, at Leland Little Auction & Estate Sales in Hillsborough, NC.

Before supper, each participant in “Fill Your Plate” will select a handmade plate which they can take home with them after supper. The pleasure of combining fine pottery and fine dining is something potters have known for a very long time, North Carolina’s ceramic history is filled with pickling jars, buttermilk pitchers, casserole dishes, pie dishes, and this event will remind patrons of the special relationship between food, pots, and potters. It’s going to be a memorable meal. Supper starts at 6pm.

But the evening’s fun only begins with the feasting. There will be a silent auction featuring pots generously donated by over 70 of NC’s finest potters, as well as many enticing non-pottery items, like wonderful holiday stays at the beach, or in the mountains.

712ncpc-auction-travis-owens
Work by Travis Owen to be auctioned

After supper the live auction will take place starting at 7:30pm, highlighting several very special pots, antique and new, made by the best-known potters of NC, and also some unique pottery “Experiences,” like making pots for an afternoon with Ben Owen, decorating plates with Alex Matisse, and helping Daniel Johnston and Mark Hewitt fire and unload their kilns. You’ll also be able to bid on having lunch and a private museum tour with Larry Wheeler, Director of the North Carolina Museum of Art, and a two-hour privately conducted golf-cart tour of the NC Zoo!

The North Carolina Pottery Center promotes awareness of North Carolina’s world-class pottery heritage through exhibitions, education, outreach, and visitor service. Located in Seagrove, just south of Asheboro, NC, it’s a great tourist destination, and serves as the perfect start to a visit of area potteries.

712ncpc-auction-hitomi-shibata
Work by Hutomi Shibata to be auctioned

All in all, this year’s auction sounds unforgettable, so be sure to attend, and pass the word along to your friends. The cost of “Fill Your Plate” will be $75 per person, for which you’ll get the mouthwatering meal and a plate to take home, which is quite a bargain! Alternatively, if you’d like to attend only the auction, admission is $10.

The NC Pottery Center wishes to thank its sponsors for this event: First Bank, Leland Little Auction and Estate Sales, Shelton Vineyards, Katie B. Morris, Progress Energy, Carolina Arts, Gardner Heating and Air, Kimberly Woodard, Community One, Hans Klaussner Foundation and The Courier Tribune.

Auction items will be online for viewing and phone bidding will be available, see details at (www.ncpotterycenter.org), (www.llauctions.com), and (www.auctionzip.com).

Please contact NCPC directly for Tickets and Reservations by calling 336/873-8430. More information about the Auction and Supper is posted on NCPC’s website at (www.ncpotterycenter.org).

Some Things You Never Plan On – Another Trip to Seagrove, NC

Wednesday, June 6th, 2012

One of the many plans we had for the big Memorial Day weekend was to make a trip to Seagrove, NC, to attend the Cousins in Clay event at Bulldog Pottery and a spring kiln opening at Whynot Pottery – both taking place on Saturday, May 26, 2012.

For a couple of weeks before that Saturday, I was sharing posts made by Bulldog Pottery and Whynot Pottery on Facebook so that others would know about these two events taking place in Seagrove. I kept injecting into the conversation a question as to whether their would be cookies at Whynot Pottery’s kiln opening – as a joke. Cookies are a big part of an event Whynot has earlier in the Spring, but they were not advertised as a part of this kiln opening.

I like to banter back and forth with the folks in Seagrove about different subjects just to make our Facebook and blog postings a little more interesting. Sometimes it’s about cookies – sometimes it’s about Michigan vs. Virginia Tech football.

Linda and I went to the Cousins in Clay event first as it is the first location we come to once we arrive in the area, but I want to talk about what happened at Whynot first.

When we arrived at Whynot Pottery, Meredith and Mark Heywood came out to greet us as we got out of our car and Meredith invited us inside for a slice of cake, I thought I heard her say pineapple upside-down cake, I said sure, but insisted that we came to see fresh pottery – right out of the kiln. Within 2 seconds of entering their showroom/gallery I found a plate of cookies and had one in my mouth.

612whynot1

You see the joke there was – way back – sometime after we first met in person, pineapple upside-down cake made its way into a conversation and I told Meredith that was my mother’s specialty and one of my favorite foods – which I haven’t had in years. She told me if I gave her a heads up before I was coming to Seagrove she would make me one. Well, it was several years later now and I had never made the request. It always seemed like I was going there at the last minute and to an occasion where they would be too busy to be making cake for me. So when I heard it mentioned – I just took it as more banter about my begging for cookies.

612whynot2

After that first cookie I started taking some pictures, but soon realized she wasn’t kidding around. She had a fresh pineapple upside-down cake waiting.

You ever have an experience where lightening flashes in your brain and when the clap of thunder comes you forget everything before that time? I really planned to get some pictures of Whynot pottery and the surroundings for future blog postings, but when I got home and downloaded my camera – I had three images from Whynot – and they were not what they should have been. That was a darn shame, but the important thing to me was I got some pineapple upside-down cake and a flood of memories of my mother that afternoon.

612whynot3

Looking back, this was a real bummer. I totally blew my mission and let them down – as far as having more images to use, but I assured Meredith that I would pay them back ten fold in any way I could. These are the same folks who sent me fruitcake during the last Christmas holiday when I was jonesin’ for fruitcake. And, it was super-fruitcake – much better than I ever had (Southern Supreme from Bear Creek, NC – (www.southernsupreme.com). They didn’t do it because they knew they would get anything out of it – they’re just good folks.

And, when you buy art, you want to buy quality art, but don’t you also want to buy art from good people? That’s one of the reasons I keep going back to Seagrove. It’s not only about the great pottery being produced there it’s about the great people we’ve met there too. Seagrove doesn’t have a lock on that in the Carolinas, we know great people all over the Carolinas, but it is a special place.

The pineapple upside-down cake was really good too. A little different than the way my mother made it, but then what isn’t. Most of the time your mother’s food is the best or at least that’s the way you remember it. This was southern style and of course my family is from the mid-west.

I hate that most of this posting about Whynot is about cookies and cake, but I didn’t plan on either of these items getting in the way of our plans. But, as you’ll read a little further on down – food can be a distraction for me.

So while other people were coming and going at Whynot Pottery and buying pottery – we were off eating cake. I’d be ashamed, but it was so long since I had some and so good. Man can not live on art alone.

Believe me, they have some great pottery at Whynot, check their website and blog – then go there and buy some. I make no promise of cookies or cake, but you will meet some good folks.

You can check out the Whynot Pottery’s blog at (http://whynotpotteryblog.blogspot.com/) or visit (www.whynotpottery.com).

I’ll refer you back to a blog posting I made before going to Seagrove to show I’m not always distracted. Click this link (http://carolinaarts.com/wordpress/2012/05/20/making-plans-for-a-big-weekend-next-weekend-may-25-27-2012/) to see what our plans were.

So, at the Cousins in Clay event at Bulldog Pottery it was a different set up this year in case of possible bad weather, but it was a beautiful day in Seagrove. The event was taking place in the breezeway between their industrial looking home and studio. I don’t have a picture, but you have to see it to know what I’m talking about.

On hand were pottery displays by Bruce Gholson and Samantha Henneke, of Bulldog Pottery, joined by their mountain “clay cousin” Michael Kline of Bakersville, NC, and two special guest potters, Ron Meyers, an icon of American ceramics from Athens, GA, and Judith Duff, a full-time studio potter from Brevard, NC. We have pictures!

612cousins-scene1

Several other area and regional potters were on hand and from pictures I saw later on Facebook and blogs – many Seagrove potters came to see the pottery and talk with the potters. Potters are great fans of other potters.

612cousins-bulldog2
Works from Bulldog Pottery

612cousins-glaze6
A close up of some of the crystalline glaze on one of Bulldog’s pieces. (I hope I have that right) Anyway it’s pretty amazing.

Linda and I spent a lot of time “looking” at pottery before we got into any conversations. Like many of our visits to Seagrove of late, or anywhere else, we spent thousands of dollars with our eyes wishing we could have known we would win the lottery that evening so we would be taking lots of pottery home with us, but even though we had lottery tickets for that Saturday’s drawing – we were stuck in “looking” mode. And, as it turned out – neither of our tickets had one number selected that evening – which is usually the case when we buy a chance at wealth.

612michael-kline3
Works by Michael Kline

612ron-meyer4
Works by Ron Meyers

612judith-duff5
Works by Judith Duff

To ease my pain I turned to conversation, something that springs freely from me and is always rewarding – when I let others speak. I also concentrated on taking photos. And over time, I’ve learned that there is some pleasure in looking at great works of art and there was plenty to see on this day.

At one point I was in deep conversation about the NC Pottery Center (www.ncpotterycenter.org) in Seagrove with Michael Kline and Ed Henneke, both on the Board of the Pottery Center when Linda appeared in the corner of my eye with a plate of amazing looking food.

It turned out that Chronis Pou Vasiliou’s wife, Mary Jane (Bruce Gholson’s sister) from Greensboro, NC, was providing a feast for the guests. Vasiliou was providing Greek music for the event. I guess it helps to have talented relatives close by, but then a lot of folks in Seagrove seem to also be gifted musicians and gifted with food too.

612cousins7
Chronis Pou Vasiliou

So are you getting a picture of our day? A nice drive to Seagrove (3 1/2 to 4 hours), great weather (not hot), great pottery, great conversation, great folks, and to top it off, great food and pineapple upside-down cake! After all, it was our anniversary and my birthday weekend.

By the way, we got gas for $3.15 a gallon in Cheraw, SC, within 20 miles of the NC border. Sorry NC, we need all the help we can get. It’s probably even lower now.

Some folks back in the Charleston, SC, area asked me earlier in the week and some later that weekend – “so let me get this straight, the Spoleto Festival begins on Friday in Charleston and you’re planning a day trip to Seagrove, NC?”. I said, “Yes and had a great time – always do. You should go there sometime and check it out”. And, many of them think it must be something special as it keeps drawing my attention from what they keep reading on this blog.

I told Meredith Heywood back at Whynot Pottery that sometime I might have to check into renting a bus from Charleston and making a magical mystery tour to Seagrove to get some people to come there.

And I’m telling you – you should go there. Seagrove is open for visitors and business – most of the time, but make plans. Your plans may turn out differently, but sometimes you’ll get rewards you didn’t plan on getting.

The next Cousins in Clay event takes place on Aug. 25 & 26, 2012. Michael Kline hosts potters Mark Shapiro, Sam Taylor, Bruce Gholson and Samantha Henneke, at Michael Kline’s Pottery (http://www.klinepottery.com/) in Bakersville, NC. For further info visit (www.cousinsinclay.com).

You can keep up with Bulldog Pottery at their blog, Around and About with Bulldog Pottery at (www.bulldogpottery.blogspot.com).

And, what about Mad Max the Wonder Dog? At some point I saw a flash of something dark and red out of the corner of my eye up on the skywalk between the two buildings at Bulldog Pottery, but no close encounters this time.

To learn more about Seagrove’s pottery community visit the Seagrove Area Potters Association’s website at (http://www.discoverseagrove.com/).

Making Plans for a Big Weekend – Next Weekend – May 25-27, 2012

Sunday, May 20th, 2012

If you’re like Linda and I, and millions of others – you got stuck working this weekend, but we’re making plans for a big weekend – next weekend. And it is a big Memorial Day weekend. That’s three days for most people – unfortunately for Linda and I – it’s back to work on Monday – the holiday. In reality – we’ll be working a lot that weekend too – as it’s the weekend after deadline for our June issue – drat!

That’s the way it’s been for 24 years since we started doing an arts newspaper. On the weekend of our wedding anniversary and my birthday, we’re stuck working to get another paper finished. It’s hard to work 24 hours a day, although it seems sometimes we try – here’s a few things we hope to do this next weekend.

We hope to have a nice anniversary/birthday dinner, see the Avengersmovie, make a trip to Seagrove, NC, to visit with some of our favorite potters, and hopefully celebrate Memorial Day with a few friends. Oh yeah, and get the paper done or almost done. This one may go down to the wire.

Now everyone knows about the Avengers and Memorial Day and one clue on the anniversary/birthday event is that they add up to 94, so let me tell you about what’s going on in Seagrove to draw us there on such a big weekend.

Of course, if you read about a lot of this on Pages 38 and 39 of our May 2012 issue of Carolina Arts, downloadable at (http://www.carolinaarts.com/512/512carolinaarts.pdf), you’d know what I’m talking about, but for those who haven’t – here’s a few reasons.

First, it’s a trip away from the house, yard, and computer into another state. That’s always a plus and it only takes a few hours to get there. Second, it’s Seagrove – a beautiful area of gently rolling hills that just happens to be one of the Southeast’s major artist colonies – a big plus for Linda who refuses to travel on the Blue Ridge Parkway – a major highway. So forget about driving around two-lane mountain roads. Third, it’s Cousin in Clay weekend, several other kiln openings on Saturday and there’s a new exhibit on view at the NC Pottery Center.

Bulldog Pottery, located at 3306 Hwy. 220, just outside of “downtown” Seagrove will be presenting the works of five talented potters during the annual “Cousins in Clay” event on May 26, 10am-5pm and May 27, 10am-4pm.

512cousins-bruce-gholson
Work by Bruce Gholson

512cousins-samantha-henneke
Work by Samantha Henneke

Bulldog potters, Bruce Gholson and Samantha Henneke, joined by their mountain “clay cousin” Michael Kline of Bakersville, NC, are hosting two special guest potters, Ron Meyers, an icon of American ceramics from Athens, GA, and Judith Duff, a full-time studio potter from Brevard, NC.

512cousins-ron-meyers
Work by Ron Meyers

512cousins-judith-duff
Work by Judith Duff

Live music will fill the air with Chronis Pou Vasiliou (Bruce’s brother-in-law) of Greensboro, NC, playing his enchanting Greek Bouzouki music along with musician Matthew Beasley from Asheville, NC. Music begins at noon and lasts throughout Saturday afternoon with a light buffet.

512cousins-michael-kline
Work by Michael Kline

Michael Kline will present brushwork demonstrations on Saturday at 2pm and on Sunday at 1:30pm. And Sunday at noon, potters and lovers of pots are all invited for a Potluck Buffet at noon.

Gain insights into the work and activities of Samantha Henneke and Bruce Gholson at their pottery blog: “Around and About with Bulldog” at (www.bulldogpottery.blogspot.com). And take a look at the website (www.cousinsinclay.com) to learn more about this year’s guest potters.

These kind of events are usually a less than free time for Max the mad wonder dog, but some might see him and get a chance to toss a red ball – once or a hundred times. And, as a bonus you might also get to chat with Ed or Gloria Henneke. A special note to Ed – I will not bring up the Michigan vs. Virginia Tech game, so there is no reason to make excuses to be out of town.

For further information or directions you can call Bulldog pottery at 336/302-3469.

Whynot Pottery, located at 1013 Fork Creek Mill Road, also just outside of “downtown” Seagrove – home and work place of Mark and Meredith Heywood, will be having a Kiln Opening on Saturday, May 26, from 9am-5pm.

512whynot-pottery

I’ve read that this round includes the cider/beer mugs that many folks have been asking for as well as a selection of whimsical tiles from their new venture, Acacia Tile. But, I’m sure they have a good stock of other works they are known for on hand.

512whynot-tile

Mark and Meredith are really shaking things up this year, so if you haven’t been there in a while – you’re going to see some new items and new looks. I’ll be looking to see if there will be any cookies. They have not been advertised – so don’t expect any, but it doesn’t hurt to hope. We all need hope.

512whynot-two-bowls

You can check out the Whynot Pottery’s blog at (http://whynotpotteryblog.blogspot.com/), call 336/873-9276 or visit (www.whynotpottery.com).

Why are Bulldog Pottery and Whynot Pottery always a must see for us? Well, besides being blogging buddies, these two potteries have been our gateway and guide to the  Seagrove pottery empire. They represent the “not so old” and “not so new” ends of that pottery community. And, like I’m sure most of the folks in Seagrove are – they’re nice people too. Plus, I hope you’ve noticed the images of the wonderful pottery they produce.

Donna Craven Pottery, located at 2616 Old Cox Road, between Asheboro, NC, and Seagrove is also having a Kiln Opening on Saturday, May 26, from 9am to 5pm.

512donna-craven

We have not been to her pottery before, but we’ve seen her work at several of the Celebration of Seagrove Potters events and you’ll find her work in many museum collections. Maybe we’ll make it there this time, but there is always so much to see and do – time has a way of slipping by, but if you’re on the North side of Seagrove – it could be your first stop.

512donnacraven1 512donnacraven2

I understand that Craven is firing a new load of pots in her wood kiln for this event. She will have a variety of old and new forms, both large and small, including items for the spring.

For further info or directions call 336/629-8173.

And, of course, who would go to Seagrove looking for pottery without stopping at the North Carolina Pottery Center, located at 233 East Avenue, in the heart of downtown Seagrove. The new exhibit there is, NC Student Ceramics Exhibit 1: High School, which will be on view through July 28, 2012. The NCPC is exhibiting the best of NC high school ceramics. The Center will be open Saturday, 10am-4pm.

NCPC-entrance

If it’s your first trip to Seagrove, I recommend it as a first stop as the Center also offers information on activities, maps and information about the potteries located in the Seagrove area and across the state. They also have a display of representative works from more than 90 area potteries and maps to help to find the potteries.

For further info call the Center at 336/873-8430 or visit (www.ncpotterycenter.org).

If you’re the planning type who has to have things all figured out before you arrive somewhere – let me suggest a visit to the Seagrove Area Potters Association’s website at (http://www.discoverseagrove.com/). You can download a map there and find connections and info about many of the area’s potteries. A lot of them will be open for business this weekend – you don’t have to follow our plans. There’s plenty to go around for everyone.

NC Pottery Center in Seagrove, NC, is Looking for Some Angels in a Haystack – Could You Be One?

Tuesday, April 24th, 2012

ncpclogo-313x450

Don’t you just hate it when you think you have your budget all figured out to make it through the next week, month or year – then out of the blue – the car needs a major repair or the air conditioners gives out on the hottest day of the year? What’s the saying – “Stuff Happens!”

The NC Pottery Center needs our help and I think they are worth it. Here’s their problem:

The NC Pottery Center has recently experienced unforeseen maintenance issues and they are asking you as a supporter of the NCPC, or just someone who is looking for a good cause, for your help in paying for lighting repairs at the Center. They hope to raise $2,000 to cover these expenses.

NCPC-entrance

They are asking that you please consider a monetary donation, becoming a new member, increasing your membership level, renewing your membership early, or buying a brick for your business or in memory/honor of someone.

The staff and board of the Pottery Center are working hard to keep the NCPC a viable museum and hope you will consider helping us.

If you can help, please visit their website at (www.ncpotterycenter.org) where you can make a quick online donation, or call then at 336/873-8430 and tell them you want to help. Thanks.

NC Pottery Center in Seagrove, NC, Announces Results of The Potter’s Palette Fundraiser

Friday, February 17th, 2012

As I have said before – this is the kind of art auction fundraiser that I can get behind and support and it turns out to have been a very successful idea – one soon to be copied by other non-profits. But, this will be the NC Pottery Center’s for the time being.

Here’s the good news.

ncpclogo-313x450

Unique canvases created by NC’s premier potters for the first-of-its-kind event at the NC Pottery Center in Seagrove, NC, were auctioned on Saturday, Feb. 4, 2012.

112potters-palette-logo

“The Potter’s Palette” featured over 90, 12”x12” canvases produced by clay artists from around the state, who were invited to create a canvas using any medium they desired, to be sold in a fund raiser to benefit the NC Pottery Center. The outstanding results raised over $18,000 during the event, which included live Celtic music by Seagrove potter Michael Mahan and an outstanding buffet of food produced by Jennie Lorette Keatts with some help from sister Pam Owens.

The palettes are still on display at the NC Pottery Center’s website (www.ncpotterycenter.org). This unusual and new event, brought another level of creativity to the North Carolina Pottery Center, and was a wonderful showcase for a different side of talent that the clay artists in NC have to offer.

112ncpc-mary-paul-john-garland
Painting by Mary Paul and John Garland

There was an air of excitement and festivity during the event where bidding went high for the exceptional paintings. The highest bid was $1700 and every palette sold, with over half bringing $100 and much more. Absentee bidding was also available at the Center and on the NCPC website and bidders came nationally from GA to VA, to CO and CA to participate in the event. Virgil Thomas of Able Auctions generously and graciously lent his expertise, while potter’s pictures were described by NCPC Vice-President and notable potter, Mark Hewitt of Pittsboro, NC, and displayed by Seagrove potter Fred Johnston and volunteer Kirk McNaughton.

Highlights of the evening included over $14,000 of palette sales, over $4,000 of donations and ticket sales and over 70 registered bidders. The NC Pottery Center relies on its fundraising activities and membership, to maintain its ongoing exhibitions and educational  activities, as the main revenue stream.

Supporting potters included: Rita Abee, Colleen Black-Semelka, Cynthia Bringle, John Britt, Tammy Leigh Brooks, Jeff Brown, Chad Brown, Bonnie Burns, Kyle Carpenter, Donna Craven and Susan Greene, Daphne Cruze, Naomi Daglish, Jeffrey Dean, Kim Ellington, Seo Eo, Mary Farrell, Abe Fenberg, Michelle Flowers, Becca Floyd, Carol Gentithes, Terry Gess, Bruce Gholson, Vicki Gill, Beth Gore, Tom Gray, Sue Grier, Michele Hastings, Samantha Henneke, Mark Hewitt, Meredith Heywood, Mary Holmes, Helene Icard, Tonda Jeffcoat, Mary Paul and John Garland, Daniel Johnston, Fred Johnston, Matt Jones, Ann Raven Jorgenson, Jennie Lorette Keatts, Crystal King, Michael Kline, Keith Lambert, Bruce Latham, Janice Latham, Andrew Linton, Dan Lovejoy, Nancy Lovejoy, Levi Mahan, Michael Mahan, Alex Matisse, Eck McCanless, Fiva McCanless, Milly McCanless, Susan McGehee, Karen Mickler, Alexa Modderno, Lynn Morrow, Ben Owen III, LoriAnn Owen, Pam Owens, Travis Owens, Vernon Owens, Hal and Eleanor Pugh, Joseph Sand, Caroleen Sanders, Hitomi Shibata, Takuro Shibata, Paula Smith, Barbara Strassberg, Roy Strassberg, Tom Soumalainen, Bobbie Thomas, Scott Thomas, John Viegland, Kate Waltman, Doc Welty, Dina Wilde-Ramsing, Charlotte Wooten and Jared Zehmer.

112potters-palette-bruce-gholson
Painting by Bruce Gholson

The evening was supported and sponsored by: The Goodknight Foundation; Lucy C Daniels; Daniel & Genene Uyesato; Martha Luck Johnson; Dr. Terry Zug; Brad Crone; Mark & Carol Hewitt; Ed & Gloria Henneke; Harriet Herring; Ellen Jordan; Dr. Linda Carnes-McNaughton; Janice & GE Gavin; Lane Wharton; Charles W Millard III; Jo M Grimley; Shelton Gorelick; Something Different Restaurant; Peggy Myers; Archie Purcell; Nancy Farmer. Many volunteers stepped forward in their efforts to support the NC Pottery Center helping with check in and registration to the food service and auction. The NC Pottery Center is grateful for the generous support of our sponsors and volunteers, without them our efforts would be lacking!

The North Carolina Pottery Center offers educational opportunities to statewide schools and individuals, changing historical and contemporary exhibitions, demonstrations, and information about statewide potters. The NCPC is a private nonprofit entity, funded primarily through memberships, grants, admissions, and appropriations.

The NC Pottery Center is open, Tue.-Sat., 10am to 4pm. Admission (excluding free special events): $2 – adults, $1 – students 9th through 12th grades, Free – children through 8th grade, free – NCPC members. The center is handicap accessible and groups and tours are welcomed.

For further information and details call 336/873-8430, e-mail to (info@ncpotterycenter.org) or visit (www.NCPotteryCenter.org).