Wisconsin Pottery Association
P.O. Box 705
Madison WI

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WPA Press
The Newsletter Of The Wisconsin Pottery Association

Issue No. XIV    October 2002

From the President  Pauline Log Cabin Update by Ori-Anne Pagel
WPA 2002 Calendar WPA Gathers Steam by Nicol Knappen
2002 Show and Sale Revisited Illinois Museum Greatly Expands Art Pottery Exhibits
Book Review: “Ceramic Arts Studio: The Legacy of Betty Harrington  

From the President...
Dear Members:
At the September meeting I expressed my gratitude for all of the fine work you have done in making our Show, Sale and Exhibit such a success. It is because of your dedication and hard work that our small organization has been able not only to produce one of the finest pottery show and sales in the Midwest, but also to mount extraordinarily comprehensive, educational exhibits of various major potteries in the American Art Pottery movement. Beginning in 1993 we have put together 8 large exhibits: Madison Ceramic Arts Studio (2 exhibits of 800 plus pieces), The Potteries of Wisconsin, Haeger Pottery, Roseville Pottery, The Potteries of Illinois, Weller Pottery and now, a magnificent exhibit of Red Wing Pottery. Seven years ago we decided to combine the exhibit with a quality art pottery show and sale. We have just completed our 7th very successful show and sale with 52 dealers providing 167 tables of fine art pottery, which provides not only the temptation/opportunity to add to our own collections but also is an education in itself. We and the 841 attendees had an excellent opportunity to look at and learn about a wide selection of American vintage and contemporary pottery as well as some fine European pottery.

Not only do we have fun learning about all the pottery and figurines, we also provide the opportunity for people in Wisconsin and surrounding states to see and learn. And thanks to Tim Zinkgraf, who places our annual exhibits on the website where many others can learn about the potteries we have featured.

Our evaluation table at the annual Show and Sale has become very popular, providing both a service and another way to educate the public, and ourselves, about pottery. Thanks to Kari Kenefick, the WPA Newsletter, the WPA Press, is another very fine educational vehicle to spread knowledge about art pottery.

When we organized 10 years ago, we had a desire to share our knowledge and excitement about art pottery, further our own education and find mechanisms to share that knowledge and excitement with others. I believe we have been very successful in doing so during our first 10 years. But, as you all know from watching our collective failures with our monthly mystery pieces, we have plenty to learn during our next 10 years. It will be exciting—thanks to all of you for making the WPA a successful and fun organization.

David Knutzen, WPA President, 2002

2002 WPA Calendar
October 8 - Blue and White Pottery by Bill Engel
November 12 -  Edgerton Potteries Part II by Mark Scarborough
December 4 - WPA Holiday and Tenth Anniversary Party (note that this is the first Tuesday in December)

Pauline Log Cabin Update
Progress is being made on restoring the Pauline Log Cabin in Edgerton, Wisconsin. Ori-Anne Pagel provided the following progress report in early September:

We are almost there! Much of the restoration has been paid for, including some replacement logs and other missing pieces. We have received in kind donations for the roof, floor, stones, etc. to lower the costs. The reconstruction of the log walls and the roof are completed above a well-ventilated foundation. The framing of the door and the windows has begun and they have finished the chinking between the logs. The fireplace is in progress and as soon as we have the funds we can lay the floor and reconstruct the half loft. To date we have raised over $18,000.00 and need about $11,000.00 in additional funds to complete the cabin restoration

In terms of who the contributors are, some community organizations have donated much, while others need to be encouraged to donate. Many companies such as Alliant, Gilman, Walmart, Target ,Lab Safety and others will match personal donations of either funds or volunteer time, so please pass the word. We will help with any of the necessary paperwork to get these matching funds.

Tom Goodger from Milton created log cabin bank as a fundraiser for the cabin project. The banks have been placed in 18 local businesses to help collect donations. Our hope is to get the last $11,000.00 needed to complete our Pauline Jacobus Log Cabin project. We would like to collect the contents of the banks on or about September 15th.

It remains to be seen which bank, bar, restaurant or store can raise the most in donations to complete the cabin. This update is hopefully another way to spread the word and encourage new donations so that we are able to complete the project this season. The grand opening is planned as one of the Edgerton Sesquicentennial events in 2003.

- Ori-Anne and Paul Pagel, WPA Members, and representatives of the Arts Council of Edgerton and Pauline Log Cabin Restoration Project, Edgerton, WI.

WPA Gathers Steam
By Nicol Knappen
The following article was reprinted, with permission, from the Journal of the American Art Pottery Association , Volume III, No. 4, (July-August 1993). Written by then JAAPA Editor and WPA founding member, Nicol Knappen, it provides a few insights into the beginnings of (as well as wonderful optimism about) the Wisconsin Pottery Association. As the WPA approaches the end of our tenth year, it seemed appropriate to take this look back.

The informal pottery gathering here in Madison that I wrote about a while back continues to evolve. I report on it here, feeling certain that this sort of thing can and should happen everywhere.

Our original get-together included about 15 people, and most of us have continued to meet monthly. Our first three meetings were in a member’s home. Looking for a more public meeting place, we met once in a rented community center room before finding a free space in a church. A name was selected—the Wisconsin Pottery Association—and interim officers were elected. We agreed to contribute $8 in dues and $1 per meeting.

The group has decided to remain closed to new members until it is fully organized. A committee is looking into by-laws and legalities: we are filing for not-for-profit incorporation this month (if I recall correctly, it’s costing us about $35 here in Wisconsin).

Our meetings begin informally; many of us bring new pottery finds or mystery pieces and these are put on a table for comments, questions and general admiration. After 45 minutes or so we get down to business. An agenda is distributed, minutes are read, the agenda is worked through and it is so wonderfully organized you can hardly stand it. We have other committees which meet and report to the group at large. A planning committee met to discuss and propose a standard meeting format so that when open membership begins new members won’t feel left out. And, after soliciting ideas from members, a program for the coming year was suggested.

Our most active committee is one working on the Ceramic Arts Studio of Madison project. It meets nearly weekly (and has subcommittees of its own). We are planning a one-day (October 17) exhibit of about 300 pieces of CASM in conjunction with a Madison antiques show. The purpose of this event is to publicize our oral history project, hoping to flush our former CASM employees. We have made contacts with the local papers and TV stations and plan to put out flyers in antique malls and shows in the four-state area. We have asked members to subsidize exhibition expenses (about $15 to $25 each) and we’re looking into other sources of funding.

Now, aren’t you inspired? Go ahead, call up a couple of pottery friends, network a little, and get started! It’s so incredibly pleasant to spend time with other pottery people: for one thing, we all speak the same language.

We thank Nicol and the JAAPA for allowing us to reprint this historic article!!

- The WPA Press is the quarterly newsletter of the Wisconsin Pottery Association. It prints approximately January, April, July and October of each year. Your contributions are welcomed. Tell us about a museum or antique shop you visited, trips you’ve taken, or a good pottery book you’ve read. Send your contributions to:

Kari Kenefick

Wisconsin Pottery Association
P.O. Box 705
Madison WI 53701-0705


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