Jeff Oestreich was trained in the austere simplicity of traditional Asian pottery while serving as an apprentice to Bernard Leach in England in the 1960s–70s. He will talk about his time at Leach Pottery in St. Ives and how its legacy continues to influence and resonate with contemporary artists. He will discuss and show his own work and the work of three potters who also apprenticed with Leach: Kat Wheeler, John Beddings, Roelof Ulys.
In the British tradition, after the talk, tea and scones will be served while attendees can meet the artist.
Libby Buckley, current director of Leach Pottery, will begin the presentation with a brief Zoom conversation about recent developments at the studio, including new buildings and exciting programs.
Let us know if you plan to attend: email@example.com
Mira Nakashima, director of George Nakashima Woodworkers and daughter of the innovative furniture maker, gave a presentation on her father’s legacy and philosophy.
The Japanese American National Museum presents a conversation between ceramic artist Joan Takayama-Ogawa and award-winning filmmaker Renee Tajima-Peña about using their anger at injustice to create powerful art that inspires social change. This conversation is presented on the occasion of our current exhibition, Joan Takayama-Ogawa: Ceramic Beacon.
The event will take place in person at the Tateuchi Democracy Forum at the Japanese American National Museum (100 North Central Avenue, Los Angeles, 90012) and will also be streaming online. RSVP is requested.
Join ceramic artist Joan Takayama-Ogawa for an insightful discussion of her decades-long practice. Joan Takayama-Ogawa’s work consistently tackles the critical issues of our times; from the degradation of the ocean and coral to school shootings. She delivers her sculptural commentary with fierce intensity, tempered by levity and visual whimsy. Listen in and learn about how she channels her anger into art. Live streamed October, 7, 2022.
We are grateful for the support of special funders for this exhibition:
Nobuko Aoto, John and Liz Kida, and Jan and Lisa Takata
The Craft in America Center is supported, in part, by the Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors
through the Los Angeles County Department of Arts and Culture.
Please join the Craft in America Center for an online presentation and discussion with editors Laura E. Pérez and Ann Marie Leimer on their book Consuelo Jimenez Underwood: Art, Weaving, Vision. The book was awarded the College Art Association’s Wyeth Foundation for American Art Publishing Grant.
Consuelo Jimenez Underwood’s artwork is marked by her compassionate and urgent engagement with a range of pressing contemporary issues, from immigration and environmental precarity to the resilience of Indigenous ancestral values and the necessity of decolonial aesthetics in art making. Drawing on the fiber arts movement of the 1960s and 1970s, Chicana feminist art, and Indigenous fiber- and loom-based traditions, Jimenez Underwood’s art encompasses needlework, weaving, painted and silkscreened pieces, installations, sculptures, and performance. This volume’s contributors write about her place in feminist textile art history, situate her work among that of other Indigenous-identified feminist artists, and explore her signature works, series, techniques, images, and materials.
Redefining the practice of weaving, Jimenez Underwood works with repurposed barbed wire, yellow caution tape, safety pins, plastic bags, and crosses Indigenous, Chicana, European, and Euro-American art practices, pushing the arts of the Americas beyond Eurocentric aesthetics toward culturally hybrid and Indigenous understandings of art making. Jimenez Underwood’s redefinition of weaving and painting alongside the socially and environmentally engaged dimensions of her work position her as one of the most vital artists of our time.
The book is available for purchase directly from the Duke University Press or your preferred bookseller.
About the editors
Laura Elisa Pérez is professor in the Program of Chicanx Latinx Studies and the Department of Ethnic Studies, and since 2018-19, is Chair of the new interdisciplinary and transAmericas Latinx Research Center, at the University of California, Berkeley. She is a core faculty member of the doctoral program in Performance Studies and of the Department of Women’s Studies, and an affiliated faculty member of the Center for Latin American Studies. Pérez is the author of Chicana Art: The Politics of Spiritual and Aesthetic Altarities (Duke University Press, 2007), a work in which she theorized decolonial aesthetics and decolonial spiritualities. Eros Ideologies: Writings on Art, Spirituality, and the Decolonial was published by Duke University Press in the fall of 2019 and received a Book Award Honorable mention from the National Association of Chicana and Chicano Studies in 2020. She is currently co-curating with María Esther Fernández a major retrospective of the work of Amalia Mesa-Bains at the Berkeley Art Museum & Pacific Film Archive which will open spring of 2023, and editing the exhibition catalog for “Amalia Mesa-Bains: Archaeology of Memory.”
Ann Marie Leimer is Professor of Art at the Juanita and Ralph Harvey School of Visual Arts at Midwestern State University in Wichita Falls, Texas. Her published work has appeared in the journals Afterimage, Chicana/Latina Studies, The Journal of Latino-Latin American Studies (JOLLAS), and Religion and the Arts and in the books Beyond Heritage, Border Crossings, Chican@ Critical Perspectives and Praxis, New Frontiers in Latin American Borderlands, Tina Fuentes: Marcando el relámpago, LatinX: Artistas de Tejas, Voices in Concert: In the Spirit of Sor Juana Inés de la Cruz, and Los Maestros: Early Explorers of Chicano Identity. She has curated several exhibitions of Chicana/o/x art including “¡Adelante Siempre! Recent Work by Southern California Chicana Photographers,” “Chicano Photographer: The 1970s from a Chicano’s Perspective,” and “Globe, AZ: A Community at the Crossroads.” Leimer serves on the National Advisory Board for Mexican American Art Since 1848, a research initiative inaugurated by Karen Mary Davalos and Constance Cortez in 2016, which hosts a searchable digital platform (MAAS1848.umn.edu) and will produce a multi-volume book, Adjacent Imaginaries.
In this virtual artist talk with Tibbie Dunbar she discusses her life and career. Streamed live on July 23, 2022.
This talk is presented in conjunction with the Craft in America Center exhibition, Tibbie Dunbar: Assemble, on view from June 25, 2022–September 10, 2022.
In this virtual artist talk, Ferne Jacobs will delve into deeper themes embedded within her organic sculptural forms such as femininity, environmentalism, and theological ideas relating to Jewish mysticism.
This talk is presented in conjunction with the Craft in America Center exhibition, Building The Essentials: Ferne Jacobs on view through June 18, 2022.
Live streamed: May 13, 2022.
The Craft in America Center is pleased to present the first ever retrospective of Los Angeles artist Ferne Jacobs. Jacobs has been at the forefront of the revolution in fiber art since the 1960s. This exhibition will span more than fifty years of pivotal work and include approximately 30 artworks created by Jacobs between the mid 1960s and 2022. Jacobs’ never before seen drawings and collages will also be on view. This momentous survey will be on display in Los Angeles, where Jacobs has lived and practiced for decades, yet rarely exhibited her work. It will explore Jacobs’ overall evolution, highlight her unrelenting search for meaning in structure, and provide insight into the impetus for her work. Building the Essentials: Ferne Jacobs is on view at the Craft in America Center from April 2, 2022 to June 18, 2022. The Craft in America Center in Los Angeles is a craft-focused library and gallery offering artist talks, workshops, exhibits and educational programs.
Lenore Tawney images courtesy of Lenore G. Tawney Foundation. Lenore Tawney in her Coenties Slip, New York studio, 1958. Photo: David Attie. Installation of works by Lenore Tawney, Gewebte Formen, Kunstgewerbemuseum, Zurich, 1964. Tawney with Drawing In Air XV (The Crossing), 1998. Photo: George Erml.
Join us for a virtual discussion with artist Harriete Estel Berman on Friday, January 21 at 12pm PST. Berman pushes the boundaries of jewelry making by using found and recycled materials to address social issues. She states, “I use the humblest of materials taken from the waste stream of our society to examine the values of our society.” Berman is featured in the JEWELRY episode of Craft in America’s PBS documentary series.
This talk is presented in conjunction with the Craft in America Center exhibition, Jewelry and Harmony: Highlights From The Episode, on view through March 19, 2022.
Included in the exhibition is a window installation of Berman’s Black Plastic Gyre Necklace (2018) and Black Plastic Bracelet (2012) surrounded by black plastic takeout containers, utensils, and other items. Berman is spotlighting the urgent need to eliminate the use of black plastic, as it cannot be recycled and instead ends up in landfills.
To donate your used black plastic to the installation, swing by the Craft in America Center during our open hours. Note: all plastic must be sanitized before donating. If you have any questions, please email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Harriete Estel Berman is an American artist and sculptor whose work has been shown throughout the United States, Europe, and Africa. Since 1988, she has been using post-consumer, recycled materials to create jewelry, Judaica, and sculpture. She has a B.F.A. in Metalsmithing from Syracuse University, and a M.F.A. from Tyler School of Art, Temple University. Between undergraduate and graduate school, she worked doing jewelry repair for many years. After graduate school, she continued working in silver repair and restoration at Peninsula Plating.
Her work can be found in the permanent collections of the Philadelphia Museum of Art, Minneapolis Institute of Arts, Crocker Art Museum, Sacramento, CA, Museum of Arts and Design, New York, NY, Detroit Institute of Arts, Columbus Museum of Art, Columbus, OH, The Jewish Museum, New York, NY, Jewish Museum, Berlin, Germany, Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, MA, Oakland Museum of California, Racine Art Museum, Renwick Gallery, Smithsonian Institute, Washington, DC.
Live streamed on October 15, 2021.
Francisco Palomares, Yesenia Prieto, and Lorena Robletto discuss their work, process, and the socioeconomic and labor issues connected to piñata making.
About the Panelists:
Francisco Palomares is a contemporary artist based in East Los Angeles. Encouraged by educators in his youth, Palomares studied the fundamentals of drawing and painting at Ryman Arts School from 2005 to 2007. In 2014, he earned a Bachelors of Fine Arts in Drawing and Painting from California State University, Long Beach. After his studies he relocated to his childhood neighborhood of Boyle Heights setting up his studio: PalomaresBLVD. His studio is a fictional street where he re-envisions Los Angeles inviting viewers to take the stage with him in storytelling. In addition to his studio practice, Palomares operates Francisco’s Fresh Paintings. For this weekly public art installation, Palomares has transformed the iconic fruit cart he grew up seeing around Los Angeles into a mobile art gallery and studio, where he paints live on the corner of 3rd and Traction at historic Joel Bloom Square in the heart of the Arts District.
Yesenia Prieto is the founder and co-owner, with Mia Baez, of La Piñata Design Studio. Led by highly experienced third generation piñata makers and designers, La Piñata Design Studio is reinventing the traditional craft of piñata making through their custom piñatas, sculptures, masks, and installations. Yesenia Prieto began making piñatas in South Los Angeles as a small time trade and has quickly harnessed her artistic skill and entrepreneurial spirit to manage larger than life installation projects for companies and museums such as LACMA, Microsoft, Google, and celebrities such as pop star Rihanna. Prieto and Baez also utilize the LA Piñata Design Studio as space and hub for leading hands-on workshops for the community to learn about the potential of piñatas as a form of craft and creativity.
Lorena Robletto founded Amazing Piñatas nearly a decade ago. After consulting for immigrant-owned businesses and serving as a social worker for immigrant families, Robletto turned her focus towards the artistry of piñatas and set up a shop in the Los Angeles Piñata District. Her studio and storefront is now located in Mid City, where her team creates custom piñatas of any scale along with ready-made piñatas and various signature designs. She frequently makes props and commissions for the entertainment industry and other branded events.
This project is supported by a grant from the City of Los Angeles Department of Cultural Affairs. www.culturela.org
Additional support for the Craft in America Center is provided by the Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors through the Los Angeles County Department of Arts and Culture. www.lacountyarts.org