The Chautauqua ceramic studio is officially locked down and closed until next season. The floors have been mopped, the glaze room cleaned and the kilns wrapped and locked within the "palace". Let me just say this... HALLELUJAH! It is nice to be home sitting in my favorite chair and typing this post out. Its not that I hated it, it is just good to be back home picking up where I left off back in June. The garden was really overgrown and needed serious tending and my deck was neglected and needed serious grilling and lounging. Anyways, I still have a whole lot of unpacking to do. I came home and just dumped everything out of the vehicle into various spots around the house. The fun unpacking comes when I begin to sort out all the art related goodies that I acquired over the last two months. I think I do this post each season I return....mugs from so and so, etc...but this will be the last of those kinds of posts, at least from Chautauqua. The big news for me is that I have officially resigned my job as Kilnmaster/studio manager/faculty/whatever I was there within the bubble that is the Chautauqua Art School. Its been a good run...3 seasons in a row, I just need to move on. It is really that simple, my summers need a change of scenery. It was a wonderful gig where I met wonderful artists of all walks. I was able to make good work and work with good people closely in the ceramic studio. Not only am I talking about our visiting faculty but also the students. I am still in touch with most of the resident students through the miracle of the Internet and I have met folks there with whom I have become really close friends. Like I said, it was a good run.
So here is a shout out to all of you guys and gals I met and worked with from the King and Queen of all that is art within the bubble, Don Kimes and Lois Jubeck...thank you for everything...all the gallery peeps over the years and especially the Gallery Director Judy Barie...Paul Houth with whom I worked with the last 3 years and Arjan Zazueta, both these guys round out the studio staff and keep the place working like it should. A retro shout out to my first tech, the very wonderful, Ms. Ashley Dodge...she helped get me on track with everything when I came in fresh. A major thank you shout out to my tech for the last two years, Dan Kuhn...dude, I could not have done it without your dedication, hard work and lightness of being. (and congrats because I am attending Dan's wedding today) A big shout out to all the visiting faculty that I met and became friends with and see and do things with outside of the bubble...Justin Lambert, Adam Paulek, Frank and Polly Martin, and Jim McDowell ...another shout out to all the other faculty with whom I met and worked with like: Jeff Greenham, Alec Karros, and Christian Kuharik....and cheers to those visiting faculty that I hope to run into again down the line like our Canadian friend Neil Forrest. Also, as I prepare to make pecan pancakes this morning, I have to give a big shout out to my favorite breakfast joints...Rowdy Rooster, BoNar's and Steadman's and a very special shout out to my two favorite beer and wing joints which without them I would have gone crazy...Larry's and The Village Casino! This post wouldn't be complete without a final good bye and good riddance to all the complaining community class ladies affectionately known to us as "the pinhole biddies"...you know who you are.(and will probably never see this post because nobody will help them log on to the Internet.)
Thanks for putting up with me...and I wish you all the best of what life has in store.
Finally, I look forward to the fall and getting back in the saddle with IUP and Nancy Smeltzer of Little Mahoning Creek Pottery. Speaking of Nancy, we will be firing the wood kiln soon I am betting. We also have the studio tour coming up in mid October, which is always a big event. More to come about that as well as pics of all my great pieces from other folks and some images of the last of my firings in the Cha that I haven't yet shown on this ol' blog....turn the page and start a new chapter.
Ahhhhh, its good to be home.