2020 American Pottery Festival Review

Images: 1) Tippy Maurant leads an artist panel with Mike Tavares, Patty Bilbro, Catie Miller, and Guillermo Guardia. 2) A display of APF artist Justin Donofrio’s work. 3) Huge pile of shipments of pots to go out to APF 2020 customers and collectors.

This year’s reinvention of American Pottery Festival (APF) left all of us here loving the clay community as we reflected on the accomplishments of everyone who helped us make the Center’s brave new version of our 22nd annual American Pottery Festival a truly meaningful, successful, gorgeous, and unexpectedly connected event. APF weekend always, always, gives us new reasons to appreciate the artists and all of you who support them during the weekend, and this year was no different. Far from a simple fundraiser, this event brought with it waves of talent, generosity, inspiration, and endless new connections for everyone. Cheers to the list of highlights from 2020:

  • Of the 25 invited artists on this year’s roster, 19 offered virtual demonstrations, workshops, and artist talks from their private studios for a grateful audience of over 300 total participants.
  • Gallery appointments created the opportunity to open our gallery doors for the first time since March to an enthusiastic audience in the safest of means to share work in person.
    • Personal shopping services and an online presence unlike any in NCC’s history created the space for guests to purchase work from all over the world, including Australia!
    • 25 outside organizations received donations due to the thoughtfulness of our guest artists.

For the NCC Crew that remains at the venue after the weekend, while everyone turns off their Zoom cameras and dives back into their everyday lives, there are endless memories and a deep well of gratitude for the contributions of so many artists, collectors, supporters, and others. A special thank you goes out to those friends, students, and collectors who trusted us and took a risk on a socially-distanced experience and to anyone who purchased work in support of our annual fundraiser. If you participated in the festival in any way, please know you are appreciated and that this thankfulness doesn’t fade! The event might be over, but we are all still sharing stories and laughing, marveling, and sending you our deepest respect.

We are already well on our way to planning 2021 APF—be sure to mark your calendars for September 3 – 5! Yes! It’s another Labor Day Weekend event, and while we have no idea what the world has in store for our 23rd annual event, we will be ready!