Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Dunn to the wire

Well it certainly feels like the holidays have already begun around here, plenty of Christmas craft fairs going on and street decorations already up, they even played a compilation of Christmas medelies during my workout class this morning at the gym! Whoa. I am beginning to understand that the Thanksgiving holiday here in the States is really the big kick off for a month long of Christmas craziness. 

Tomorrow is the big turkey holiday, which we're gearing up to celebrate with some of the other graduate students. Plenty of the students seemed to have already dispersed across the country , returning home or joining friends and relatives elsewhere. More people travel for this holiday in this country than they do for Christmas. 

Our pals Trevor and Donna headed off for the airport in Salt Lake very early this morning to catch a flight to Florida where they'll be spending Thanksgiving before Trevor heads off to China for two weeks.  

Trevor Dunn is a very recent grad of the USU ceramics MFA program. He finished his masters last spring and following graduation accepted an adjunct teaching position with USU and is also the ceramic studio coordinator (technician).  Trevor and Donna first moved to Logan back in 2006 from New Mexico where Trevor had been teaching ceramics and sculpture at San Juan College.  

In his final year of graduate school he received the 2009 NCECA Graduate Student Fellowship Award for a proposed study and film project in Jianxi, China. Trevor's project includes making a video documentary that captures a traditional potter's technique of making large coil built water jars. This will be Trevor's second trip to China, as he spent 3 months there in 2007 where he initially met Mr. Jin and first learned the coil and paddle technique. Check out his blog of this visit.

There was a lot going for Trevor this week, besides preparing for his trip to China this past week, Trevor also finished up his toolmaking class with a potluck last Friday and managed to squeeze in a firing of the train kiln to get some new work out for his upcoming "Postgraduate Fellows" show that he is part of with fellow graduates Denny Gerwin (Sculpture) and Scott Foster (Painting). The show opens up in the new Studio 102 Gallery on December 14th. 

Trevor was also kind enough to answer a few of my questions amidst his crazy week. Here's what he had to say:
Why USU?
It was my top choice for a graduate program, for many reasons including the woodfiring research and expertise going on here, the calibre of the faculty and their complementary teaching styles. Also I was looking for a program where I wouldn't have to justify why I wanted to make functional pots.

Why Clay? 
I didn't choose clay so much as it chose me. I was actually half way through completing an English Lit degree when I was introduced to clay through an extracurricular attempt to make a present for some friends that were getting married. I kept checking out the wheels and decided that despite being in my senior year of and English degree, I was interested enough to shift gears and take my undergraduate degree in ceramics and sculpture. 

What are you making now?
Right now I'm making pots again. I spent a lot of time on my thesis work over the last year and I felt like I was forgetting how to make pots. I want to make work that has gestural qualities in fluid lines. 

We're sorry we'll miss the opening on the 14th because we'll be in sunny Mexico drinking mojitos on the beach, but I don't think Trevor will notice our absence because he won't be there either - good luck in China Trevor! 

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