NCECA: Beautiful Affordable Art to Make Your Pottery-Filled Life Easier, Part 1: Galleries

by Allison Currie March 21, 2013

The National Council for Education in the Ceramic Arts has landed in Houston, and it’s worth the trip downtown. Ceramic artists from around the country are showing off their best and newest pieces, and you can touch them! With many pieces priced under $50, you might even be able to buy them. If you’re not shopping for art, there are vendors ready to sell you the latest and greatest tools to enhance your pottery studio: from handcrafted wooden modeling tools to digitally printed decals.

For part 1 of my NCECA exploration, I visited with the artists and gallerists in the first (free!) portion of the sprawling conference, laid out in booths, like an art fair. Here are some highlights:


Danny Meisinger

Spinning Earth Pottery, Kansas City, KS
Spinning Earth Pottery features four artists: Cathy Broski, Connor Burns, Susan Filley and owner Danny Meisinger. Danny, located right near the entrance, encourages conversation: “The thing that’s really cool about the general public coming [to NCECA]…One, it’s free and two, it’s the best it gets.  There are a ton of artists standing by their work and they can talk about it with you. It’s an incredibly accessible experience.”







18 Hands Gallery

18 Hands Gallery, Houston, TX
Houston’s 18 Hands Gallery is showing 30 artists, some from Houston, at its booth and is hosting the Archie Bray show and a block party on Friday evening from 6-10 p.m. at its gallery on 19th St. called All Fired Up. It’s a multi-venue ceramic revel including Winter and Spring St. Studios. With a shuttle provided by NCECA making travel between shows easy, there’s no reason to miss out!



Red Lodge Clay Center, Red Lodge, Montana

Located near Yellowstone National Park, Red Lodge is a retail and gallery center representing over 80 artists in the U.S. and Canada. I had the opportunity to talk to a few women showing with the gallery.


Gregg & Coleman

Artists Alexis Gregg and Tanner Coleman usually collaborate on large-scale public works influenced by Native American culture. This totem is one of their first collaborations done in studio-size.









Brittany Helms

Brittany Helms makes childlike cups and bowls reminiscent of domestic space. She creates simple and innocent forms with refined slip work referencing domestic life, and maintains playful feminine theme. “One of my professors referred to my work as ‘nostalgia on estrogen,'” she said.



Art Stream on the road

Art Stream on the road

Art-Stream Nomadic Gallery, Aspen, CO
To form a nomadic gallery, artist Alleghany Meadows transformed a 1967 Airstream Sovereign Land Yacht into a traveling exhibition which has gone from Los Angeles to New York City showing contemporary art. When I visited, artist Steven Colby was manning the yacht, which was parked inside the exhibition space. Steven’s work focuses on aesthetics and the pursuit of beauty through the journey of zen-like repetitive practice.


Branan Mercer

Brannen Mercer

The Kiln Studio & Gallery, Fairhope, AL
Among the artists featured at The Kiln Studio & Gallery, I found Houston-born Brannen Mercer, who moved to Fairhope at the age of 11. Brannen is showing clean, white work focused on form and function. He’s explored a lot of aesthetics and techniques in his studies and is taking the time to back up and focus on the craft.







Other works that caught my eye from among the 100 or so exhibitors:



Annette Gates

Annette Gates

Esther Shimazu

Esther Shimazu

Elaine Coleman

Elaine Coleman

Lisa Clague

Lisa Clague



Jill Foote-Hutton March 25, 2013 - 13:25

It was great to have the coverage and for our resident artists to get a chance to talk with you. Just a few corrections though, we are near Yellowstone rather than Yosemite and we represent over 80 nationally recognized ceramic artists. You can see more of our residents’ work on our website:

Thanks again for visiting NCECA and sharing the world of ceramics with your audience.
Jill Foote-Hutton
Gallery Coordinator, Red Lodge Clay Center

Allison Currie March 25, 2013 - 14:15

Hi Jill!
Sorry about that, I made the corrections!


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