crafts

If I have to put myself into a box, I suppose I am a fashion/ textile artist. I have been making my own clothes since high school, when my mother bought me my first sewing machine, it wasn't until college that my obsession with textiles really took off. I knit, sew, crochet, even weave and have learned primarily through experimentation.
While in college, I majored in anthropology and minored in linguistics. This has had a deep (if not defining) impact on both how I view textiles and handicrafts, and how I approach my own handiwork. That is to say, I am always aware how what we wear communicates with those around us, of the messages embedded within art; of the rich histories and traditions behind each craft as well as the innovations and new breaths of life being given to those same crafts.

MudBugs Pottery began early in 2004 with a sturdy electric wheel, some porcelain clay, and a portable raku kiln. We broadened our reach in 2007 with a small electric kiln almost 50 years old. This allowed us to begin producing enough volume for a limited number of Art Fairs and exhibiting annually. The success of online sales helped us to purchase our first fully-automated kiln in 2009, and Etsy shop moonshine-jug.com has since become a major facet of our business. Our work is also found at Homespun in the Historic Irvington Neighborhood of Indianapolis, Vintage Karma in Tuscola, Illinois, and The Illinois State Artisans Gallery at Rend Lake. As part of our community involvement we regularly contribute to a local HIV Awareness fundraiser and fundraisers for local food banks and soup kitchens.

Ann

Ann Coddington Rast is an Associate Professor at Eastern Illinois University Art Department teaching in Foundations and Graduate Studies. She received her MFA from the University of Illinois Sculpture Department in 1993, and her BFA from the Colorado State University Fibers Department in 1986.

Coddington Rast utilizes a variety of fiber techniques including twining and netting in her sculptural forms. She has most recently exhibited her work at venues including: Society for Contemporary Craft in Pittsburgh, the Bingham Gallery at the University of Missouri in Columbia, the Beverly Arts Center in Chicago, the Weston Art Gallery in Cincinnati, the Mobilia Gallery in Boston, and the Snyderman Works Gallery in Philadelphia. Ann received an individual artist project grant from the Illinois Arts Council in 2012, an individual grant in 2000, and a finalist grant in 2004 and 2008.

She says of her work, “We live in a world of increasingly complex technologies that paradoxically, in their effort to connect us, instead separate and isolate us, removing us from authentic experience. As the world becomes more complex, I am driven to simplify. I tie two pieces of string together, bend some sticks, form plaster in my hands. I love the feel and smell of the materials. The slow building of one stitch upon stitch exists within an ancient time frame, virtually never experienced in the contemporary technological world.”

Georgia Morgan designs one-of-a-kind jewelry, accessories and functional art for the home. She has lived in Urbana since 1970, and has been making jewelry since 1990. She has studied metalsmithing and polymer clay techniques with masters of these arts in international workshops.
Images of her work have been published in The Crafts Report and 400 Polymer Clay Designs (Lark Books). Her one-of-a-kind adornments, hand-crafted from polymer clay, gemstones and metals are available locally at Wind Water and Light in Lincoln Square, Urbana. Examples can be viewed, and custom pieces ordered, at www.georgiamorgan.net.

Graphic Designer, Instructor

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