Previously, we recounted the winners of the Awards of Excellence at the 2011 American Craft Council show in St. Paul. Juror Mark Pharis did the honors this year. Pharis is a former student of Warren MacKenzie, and he teaches ceramics at the University of Minnesota, where he's been an instructor since 1985. Susan Mahlstedt, Lynn Joris Reintsema and K. Meta Reintsema, and B.J.
A number of artists at this year's St. Paul show are applying their skills - with ceramics, glass, fiber, metal, and wood - to beautiful lighting. Here's a quick list of some that caught my eye. There's still time to see this fantastic work in person, too: The show is open today until 5 o'clock. If you're not in the area (and even if you are), click on the artists' bolded names to visit their websites.
Unexpected textures abound at this year's ACC show in St. Paul. Sleek adjoins nubby, craggy erupts from lustrous, and subtle variations make lovely work even lovelier.
Kim Geiser's enamel jewelry is a study in rough and smooth. The artist uses stencils to add designs to her modernist pendants and recently started scratching graphite markings on the surfaces of her glossy pieces.
At every American Craft Council show, the ACC gives out Awards of Excellence to a group of exceptional exhibitors, who are selected by guest jurors. It's a thrilling event: Show-goers gather with jurors and ACC staff, then everyone marches off in a grand parade to surprise the winners in their booths.
The devastating earthquake in Japan, followed by the tsunami and ongoing nuclear crisis have shaken the hearts of people around the world. Organizations and individuals from all walks of life have poured their efforts into campaigns to help: university students can be seen on the streets with donation boxes; celebrities are giving charity performances; relief supplies and funds from other countries are sent to Japan everyday. Shan Shan, a textile artist from Osaka, has tried to support her country's grieving people with her artwork.