This was our first time to invite two separate studio artists to combine and present one workshop, and despite being good friends, this was the first workshop that Adam Field and Forrest Lesch-Middelton gave together. They were actually a bit of a comedy show as well as pottery workshop, entertaining their audience of a dozen artists from Kansas, Iowa, Arkansas, Texas, Wisconsin, California and even Alaska. The two were *almost* the odd couple. Forrest working with a messy dark stoneware body while Adam used his pristine porcelain. And Adam is very much about the rules of ceramics, while Forrest would sneakily tell the attendees how to get around the rules. The stories and interactions made the learning that much more enjoyable!
Original Adam Field & Forrest Middleton Workshop Description:
In this two-day workshop, potters Adam Field and Forrest Lesch-Middelton will demonstrate methods of working that have led them to create distinct, yet complimentary, bodies of work. Field and Lesch-Middelton share an affinity for pattern and history while incorporating completely different sources, materials, and inspirations into their pots. Field will demonstrate his methods of wheel-throwing porcelain vessels and carving intricate pattern on a variety of forms. Lesch-Middelton will demonstrate the volumetric image transfer techniques he has developed to create his pattern-laden, functional forms. Field’s generous discussions about his time as a potter’s apprentice in Korea, personal aesthetics, and promotion and marketing strategies for the studio potter are certain to encourage individual discovery, growth, and development of fresh ideas. Forrest will also host conversations ranging from setting up a cost-effective studio practice, developing and using silk-screens for image transfer, finding and generating pattern, mapping out and developing form for pattern transfer, and exploring the reduction cooling process he uses to attain the weathered surfaces of his work. There will also be informative discussions and exercises geared towards finding inspiration through personal exploration of one’s own practices both in and out of the studio. Attendees will gain the skills and confidence to create and decorate work in his or her voice.
Adam and Forrest have been friends for 14 years, and have developed parallel careers leading each of them onto successful paths as both artists and educators. Although they live miles apart, Field and Lesch-Middelton often share ideas and learn from one another’s experiences raising families and navigating a delicate work/life balance that includes a healthy support and constructively competitive dialog as both friends and colleagues.
Adam Field Bio
Born and raised in Colorado, Adam Field earned his BA in Art from Fort Lewis College. For two years he immersed himself in the culturally rich art scene of the San Francisco bay area, where he began his full time studio practice. From there, he relocated to Maui, where he established a thriving studio business. He spent most of 2008 in Icheon, South Korea, studying traditional Korean pottery making techniques under 6th generation Onggi master Kim Il Mahn. In 2013 he cre- ated and debuted HIDE-N-SEEKAH at the NCECA conference in Houston, TX. After maintaining his studio in Durango, CO for 5 years, Adam recently moved to Helena, MT where he is currently a long-term artist in residence at The Archie Bray Foundation. His works are included in private collections and kitchen cabinets internationally.
Adam Field Artist Statement
I am fascinated with antique artifacts, the way they can speak of mastery of lost peoples, places, and cultures. This inspires me to create works that both radiate history and capture my own place and time. I work toward a clean aesthetic that celebrates the masterful simplicity of antique Far Eastern pottery, while retaining the modest utility of colonial American wares. The surface of my pottery is meticulously carved with intricate designs that borrow from nature and incorporate the human touch. Much of the carving on my work is informed by pattern languages found in indigenous fiber art, such as Hawaiian tapa, Incan cordage, and Zulu basketry.