Potter to discuss art as career

Al Holen said she loves everything about ceramics.

“70 percent of the Earth’s surface is clay,” the assistant professor of ceramics said. “It is renewable and constant resource and I love that about it.”

While teaching her ceramics classes Holen utilizes a website called ceramic arts daily. All of the students in her classes subscribe to the free service and gain access to online tutorials.

One of the artist who Holen often shows her classes is potter Martha Grover.

Students in her advanced ceramics classes last year asked Holen why Grover was not a visiting artist. After meeting her at a national conference over the summer, Holen was able to make that happen.

Grover will host “Art as Career in the 21st Century” from 6 to 7 p.m. Sept. 15 in Kleymeyer Hall.

“(Grover) is also a self supporting artist,” Holen said. “…I can tell them about life as an artist in academia, but I can’t necessarily teach them about making a living doing just art. But (Grover) does that and does it very well.”

Holen said the techniques Grover uses are beautiful and they really interest students.

“Her work is exquisite,” Holen said. “She works on the potter’s wheel, but she alters her forms a lot. You’d never know that they were thrown because they are rarely round.”

Grover’s work has been featured in multiple galleries such as the Archie Bray Foundation Warehouse Gallery, the Charlie Cumming Gallery and magazines like American Craft and Ceramics Monthly.

“I work toward creating a sense of elegance for the user while in contact with each porcelain piece,” Grover said in a press release. “Reminiscent of orchids, flowing dresses and the body, the work has a sense of familiarity and preciousness. Transmitting desire – there is a sense of revealing and concealing.”

Grover will also hold workshops from 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Sept. 15 and from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Sept. 16 at the Dowhie Ceramics Center.

The workshops and lecture are free and open to the public.

Holen said she doesn’t know exactly what Grover will speak about, but she has complete trust in her.

“I just know that she is going to inspire,” Holen said.