American pottery legend, Warren MacKenzie, left this world on December 31, 2018, at the age of 94. His life was a rich tapestry of experiences from which he created an enormous body of work as a potter. He also taught students for two generations. It could be said that Warren MacKenzie was one of Bernard Leach's most successful and influential students. After reading Leach’s “A Potters Book” in 1947, Warren and his wife Alix set sail from the US to visit Leach in Saint Ives, England. Both Warren and Alix had been studying ceramics at the Chicago Art Institute but felt something was missing in their education.
In late November of 2018, I had the opportunity to travel out to Omaha to tour the Kaneko Center and meet the iconic Jun Kaneko. His story is made up of equal parts of unstoppable determination, vision, boundless imagination and serendipity. Born in 1942 in Nagoya, Japan during WWII, his artistic talents started to emerge through impressive drawings that he fashioned in his free time while in high school. Jun resisted the strict structure of traditional Japanese education. His mother (a dentist by day, and a painter by night) recognized his self-driven passion to be creative and arranged to have him study painting with Satoshi Ogawa. Read More
I first met Betty Woodman in 1971 in Antella, Italy. Betty and her husband George had just recently bought a small, stone house perched on a hillside overlooking olive groves with dreamlike Florence in the distance. Betty's studio was under the house. It was very simple and small with a treadle wheel and basic shelving.
The fully creative life of Paulus Berensohn, artist, dancer, potter, teacher, journal maker, philosopher and deep ecologist is being celebrated by the many people whose lives he touched. His 1970s book, "Finding One's Way with Clay", is where many came to know him and his philosophy of ceramics. A 2013 documentary, "To Spring from the Hand: The Life and Work of Paulus Berensohn", tells the story of a long life of compassionate, creative contemplation. How lucky we are that he so generously shared himself with us.