Artists Archives Ceramics Invitational


When I moved from Western New York to Cleveland Ohio, I was extremely impressed with the both the quantity and quality of work being produced by Ohio ceramic artists.  After 23 years my enthusiasm and admiration for these artists has only increased. So I am thrilled to begin our summer at the Artists Archives with a Ceramics Invitational Exhibition. Works by 17 different artists will be included in the exhibition: Jeffrey Allen, Tracy Ameen, Diana Bjel, Susan Gallagher, Yumiko Goto, Michael W High, Eva Kwong, James Leslie, Lynne Norwood Lofton, Jenny Mendes, Sandy Miller, J. Derek O’Brien, George Roby, Jack Rotar, Mindy Sand, Brinsley Tyrrell and Theresa Yondo.


I was also delighted when Lakeland Community College Gallery Director, Mary Urbas, agreed to curate this exhibition for us. Urbas has 35 plus years of experience in the professional art world as a gallery owner, curator, teacher, and consultant. She worked closely for more than 17 years with Sylvia Ullman who owned American Crafts Gallery, and is a member of the Surface Design Association of America and the American Crafts Council, as well as a participant in several regional artist guilds and associations.


Urbas’s curatorial statement succinctly expresses her intent in her selection of works:


”I appreciate that a clay artist honors the handmade object. I respect the process of integration of surface to form, initiating a relationship to the object: creating a dialogue between artist and viewer. Some consider the surface of the clay a blank canvas, to which colors, textures and glazes are applied. This surface can be hard and glossy, or soft and earthy, industrial or organic.


“For this show at the Archives, I chose artists who honor their craft, and incorporate the many different techniques of surface embellishments and various glaze application, into ceramic art that will be hand-built, wheel-thrown or sculptural in design. I wanted to take advantage of a different venue, to curate and design an installation that features artists who don’t regularly show in this area, or whom I could help by offering them increased visibility for their work.


“The Northeast Ohio clay community is vast and expansive. There is a tremendous amount of talent living throughout the region. As a curator and gallery director, my mission has always been to create venues for artists to display their work; to conceive a visual story line within the installation; to present the work in a thoughtful and respectful way. I am grateful to the Artists Archives for the opportunity to bring this collection of compelling clay art to a new audience.”



Artists Archives of the Western Reserve

1834 E. 123rd St.

Cleveland Ohio 44106





The New Now 2016 – submissions March 15 – July 6. Online only through


Ceramic Invitational, May 26 – July 9. Reception 5:30-8 pm Thursday, May 26.


Professional Practices – The State of the Practice: 2 – 4 pm June 4 at CIA Cinematheque. Lecture by Julie Hanus. (replaces Collecting Contemporary Ceramics lecture)


Art Interprets Alzheimers & Out of the Archives, June 22 – July 13, at the Beachwood Community Center. Works from the AAWR collection plus George Roby, Sue Roby and Herb Ascherman


Adele Marihatt, through July 1. Presented by ArtSource and the AAWR Legacy Society at the Penton Media Building, 1300 9th St., Cleveland


Paul Henri Bourguignon, An Ohio Legacy, July 21 – Sept 10, The Inaugural solo exhibition for noted Ohio artist Bourguignon, who was archived in 2013.


The Woman behind the Artist – 6:30 – 8 pm August 17. Irene Shaland discusses anthropologist Erika Bourguignon



Jenny Mendes Monkey

Title : Monkey

Material: terracotta clay, underglazes, terrasigalotta

size:  7″ x 3.5″ x 6″