Andréa Keys Connell (b. 1980, USA) is an Assistant Professor and Head of the Clay Area in the Department Craft/Material Studies at Virginia Commonwealth University. She was one of the Department’s first Fountainhead Fellows 2010-11. After a national search, Andréa was offered the tenure track position as the Head Professor in the Clay Area. In the first year of Andréa’s appointment at VCU the US News and World Report national ranking of the Clay Area moved from #11 to #9. She received her BFA from the Maryland Institute College of Art in 2002, and her MFA from Ohio University in 2009.
Andréa’s work has been featured in a number of national and international publications and she has widely exhibited her work. Most recently Andrea was featured in Art Papers, Korean Monthly Ceramics, and she was highlighted as one of Ceramic Monthly’s Emerging Artists. Andréa is also a featured artist in the recent books Ceramics and the Human Figure and Lark Books 500 Figures in Clay.
She has had 10 solo exhibitions in various galleries and museums since receiving her MFA in 2009, including The Florida Holocaust Museum, The Clay Studio, and The Kentucky Museum of Art and Craft. Marking her eleventh solo show, Andréa is currently working on a new body of work to be shown at Western Kentucky University in February 2015. You can currently view her work at the Contemporary Craft Society in Pittsburgh where she was selected to exhibit in Transformation 9: Contemporary Works in Ceramics: Elizabeth R. Raphael Founder’s Prize Exhibition, and at the Clay Art Center in Port Chester, NY where Andréa’s mentor Brad Schwieger invited her to exhibit beside him in Lineage: The Art of Mentorship.
Along with exhibiting her work and teaching at VCU, Andréa has taught workshops on figure sculpting at various craft schools across the country including Haystack, Arrowmont, and the Appalachian School of Craft. Scheduled for the spring of 2015 Andréa has been invited to lead a workshop on emotive figure sculpting at The Metropolitan Museum of Art, NYC.
Andréa has an investment in enriching the dialogue within her field. She recently served as a panel moderator during Arrowmont’s Human Form Symposium where she led a panel on the subject of “The Productivity of Failure in the Studio”. She has also been sought out for her expertise by the Metropolitan Museum of Art for an Invitational Artist Study Day.