Craft / Material Studies

Fountainhead Fellow Lecture | Jina Seo

Lecture | Monday, November 28th at 12:00pm

Location | the Depot, 814 West Broad St


BIO | Jina Seo is an artist, a maker, and an educator. Her practice explores the relationships between body, clothing, sexuality, fetish, and space. She received her MFA in Studio Art/Metal at the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign in 2016 and BFA in Metalwork and Jewelry Design at the Kookmin University at Seoul, South Korea in 2012. Her work has been exhibited nationally and internationally, including Brooklyn Metal works, Brooklyn, NY; Walker Art Center, Minneapolis, MN; Woman Made Gallery, Chicago, IL; Sung-Gock Gallery, Seoul, Korea; and (AV17) Gallery, Vilnius, Lithuania. She was a Gold Award recipient for the ITAMI International Craft Exhibition in 2010 and currently is a Fountainhead fellow at the Virginia Commonwealth University in 2016-2017.


Visiting Artist | Peter Beasecker

Lecture | Thursday, November 3rd at 2:30pm

Location | 609 Bowe Street, RM 535double-oval-carrier-mt-alban-series-2013-300

BIO | Peter Beasecker was born in Toledo, Ohio and received a BS degree from Miami University and his MFA from Alfred University. He joined the faculty of Syracuse University’s College of Visual and Performing Arts in 2009 after a seventeen-year tenure at the Meadows School of the Arts at Southern Methodist University. Beasecker is a Professor of Art teaching ceramics and graduate studies.  He has received numerous awards and distinctions in his career, most recently being named a NYFA Fellow for 2015.  Beasecker has exhibited extensively in national and international venues, and his work is included in the collections of the Renwick Gallery of the Smithsonian Institution, The Minneapolis Institute of Art, and the Mint Museum in North Carolina.  He has been a visiting artist and workshop leader at over sixty institutions, including Anderson Ranch, Arrowmont School of Arts and Crafts, Haystack Mountain School of Crafts, and the Penland School of Crafts.  Beasecker has been the co-coordinator of the Utilitarian Clay Symposium at Arrowmont since 1996.  He currently maintains a studio in Cazenovia, New York.


Visiting Faculty | Lauren Fensterstock

Lecture | Wednesday, October 5th at 12pm

Location | the Depot, 814 West Broad St


Lauren Fensterstock | Forays and Follies July 17 – August 28, 2015 Drexel University

Lauren Fensterstock | Forays and Follies
July 17 – August 28, 2015
Drexel University

BIO Lauren Fensterstock explores the history of nature in her elaborate installations and sculptures. Her work has been the subject of major solo exhibitions at Drexel University, The John Michael Kohler Art Center, and The Bowdoin College Museum of Art; and will be the subject of an upcoming solo project at MOCA Jacksonville in 2017. Fensterstock is represented by Claire Oliver Gallery in New York.

Outside the studio, Lauren has taught, lectured, and critiqued around the country most recently at the Rhode Island School of Design. She previously served as Academic Program Director of the Interdisciplinary MFA in Studio Arts at Maine College of Art and as Director of the Institute of Contemporary Art at Maine College of Art. Her curatorial projects and published writings have been featured internationally. Lauren holds degrees from the Parsons School of Design (BFA 1997) and SUNY New Paltz (MFA 2000).



Visiting Artist | Meeta Mastani

Lecture | Thursday, September 22nd at 2pm

Location | 609 Bowe Street, RM 535 



BIO | Meeta Mastani (formerly Meeta Sandeep) is an internationally known print/dye artist, design specialist and community development advocate. For the last 25 years, Meeta has worked at the intersection of sustainable development, culture, craft, design, arts and retail, helping to generate livelihoods for marginalized individuals and communities.

Since graduating from Delhi University, Meeta has researched and worked intensively in the Indian crafts scene. She works with artisans across India in the areas of printed textiles, weaving, embroidery, folk art, leather work, wood work, pottery and metal work, serving on the boards of several craft and development organizations. Since co-founding Bindaas Unlimited, a sustainable, fair trade textile and craft business, she has focused on reinterpreting traditional craft and art for urban and international markets.

As one of the founders of a craft-centered development initiative, she has lived in rural Rajasthan where she has created contemporary block prints on textiles and T-shirts with ancient printer communities, reviving and expanding the natural dye traditions and creating new designs and techniques. An example of her work was recently displayed at the exhibition, ‘The Fabric of India’ at the Victoria and Albert Museum in London.



Visiting Artist | Jay Nelson

Lecture | Tuesday, September 6th at 12pm

Location | the Depot, 814 West Broad St

 Golden Gate 2

image: Jay Nelson

BIO Jay Nelson’s selected exhibitions include Bolinas Art Museum, The Bekeley Art Museum, the Oakland Museum of Art, Triple Base Gallery, San Francisco; Baer Ridgway, San Francisco; V1 Gallery, Copenhagen; Space 1026, Philadelphia; Elizabeth Leach Gallery, Portland; Samson Projects, Boston; New Image Art, Los Angeles, upcoming at San Francisco Museum of Craft and Design. He has commissioned work  for Lawrence Rinder, the Oakland Airport, Mollusk Surf Shops in Venice, Silver Lake and San Francisco, Patagonia and Vissla. Nelson has been featured in The New York Times Style Magazine, Surfer’s Journal, Surfer Magazine, Juxtapose, The L Magazine, The San Francisco Bay Guardian, San Francisco Magazine and Readymade. He received his MFA from Bard College in 2008 and his BFA from California College of the Arts in 2004.



Visiting Artist | Kim Harty

Lecture | Wednesday, March 23rd at 1pm

Location | the Depot, 814 West Broad St

 Skin Landscape7

image: Old Venetian Glass, 2014, 36″ x 48″, digital print with slow exposure images and leds

BIO | Kim Harty is an artist, writer, and educator. Her work investigates the connection between craft and technology through sculpture, installation, video, and performance. She is heavily informed by her training as a glass blower, and draws on her personal history as a craftsperson to explore how kinetic knowledge can be tracked, embodied, and performed.



Visiting Artist | Fred Wilson

Lecture | Wednesday, December 2nd at  11am

Student Commons Theater, 907 Floyd Avenue
Cosponsored by VCUarts Departments of Art History, Craft/Material Studies, Painting + Printmaking, and Sculpture + Extended Media


BIO | Fred Wilson has created site-specific installations in collaboration with museums and cultural institutions throughout North America, the Caribbean, Europe, the Middle East, and Asia. His work encourages viewers to reconsider social and historical narratives and raises critical questions about the politics of erasure and exclusion. Beginning with the groundbreaking and critically acclaimed exhibition Mining the Museum (1992-93) at the Maryland Historical Society, Fred Wilson has juxtaposed and re-contextualized existing objects to create new installations, which alter their traditional meanings or interpretations. In 2003, Wilson represented the United States at the 50th Venice Biennale with the solo exhibition, Fred Wilson: Speak of Me as I Am. His many accolades include the prestigious John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation “Genius” Grant.


Fountainhead Fellow | Heather MacKenzie

Lecture | Thursday, November 19th at 12:30pm

609 Bowe Street, RM 535 


BIO Heather MacKenzie is an artist, writer, and educator currently living in Richmond, Virginia, as the Fountainhead Fellow in Craft and Material Studies at Virginia Commonwealth University. In her work, Heather looks to the textile as a foundational piece of human technology that is sensual and material while simultaneously embedded with complex mathematical information. In two- and three-dimensional work, as well as performance, she examines other, equally foundational systems that span the material world and the abstract one: platonic mathematics, Euclidean geometry, and standardized measurement. For the academic year of 2014-15, Heather was a Fulbright Fellow in Paris, France, where she produced work and had a solo installation as artist-in-residence at l’École des Arts Décoratifs. She has studied traditional textiles in Ecuador, Ghana, India, Zimbabwe, as well as in Europe, and she has exhibited work recently at venues including the Mission Gallery and Rhona Hoffman Gallery in Chicago, and PointDom in Toulouse, France. Heather received her BA from Brown University and her MFA in Fiber and Material Studies from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago. Website.



Visiting Artist | Saya Woolfalk

Lecture | Wednesday, November 18th at 12pm

609 Bowe Street, RM 535


BIO Saya Woolfalk was born in Gifu City, Japan, to a Japanese mother and a mixed-race African American and white father. She grew up in Scarsdale, NY, and has an art studio in Manhattan. Woolfalk was educated at Brown University (B.A. Visual Art and Economics 2001) and earned her M.F.A. in Sculpture at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago in 2004. Woolfalk moved to New York in the 2006, to participate in the Whitney Museum of American Art Independent Study Program, and was an artist-in-residence at the Studio Museum in Harlem from 2007-2008. She currently lives in Brooklyn, NY, with her husband, the anthropologist, Sean T. Mitchell, and their daughter.

Woolfalk’s work has exhibited at galleries and museums around the United States and abroad, including PS1/MoMA in New York, the Museum of Contemporary Art, Chicago, Studio Museum in Harlem, Frist Center for the Visual Arts in Nashville, Weatherspoon Art Museum, Greensboro, NC, and the Contemporary Arts Museum Houston. And she participated in PERFORMA09.

She has received a number of prestigious awards including a Fulbright for research in Maranhão, São Paulo, and Rio de Janeiro, Brazil a Joan Mitchell Foundation MFA Grant, a New York Foundation for the Arts Fellowship, an Art Matters Grant and has been an artist-in-residence at the Newark Museum, University at Buffalo, Yaddo, Sculpture Space and Dieu Donne Papermill.

With funding from the NEA, her solo exhibition, “The Institute of Empathy,” ran at Real Art Ways Hartford, CT from the fall of 2010 to the Spring of 2011. Her first major solo exhibition at a North American museum opened at the Montclair Art Museum in October 2012. Website.



Visiting Artist | Holly Hanessian


Sense Sensation

Tuesday, November 10th at 2:30pm

609 Bowe Street, RM 535



BIO | Holly Hanessian is a studio artist, educator and scholar. She creates artworks that inhabit the overlapping worlds of craft, design and contemporary art. Her most recent project involves ideas based on neuroscience and the senses, in particular the sensation of touch. She has taught, lectured, and exhibited projects and sculptural books internationally and extensively in the United States. In addition to her ceramic art practice, she has written articles and reviews on other studio artists who work in ceramics and most recently investigated contemporary ideas using digital applications in the field of contemporary ceramics.

Holly Hanessian is the area head of ceramics and a Professor of Art at Florida State University. For more information on her artwork, articles and ideas, please visit the following websites:, ,, or at