It’s Time to Look Forward . . . and Back
at “New Mexico Connections” Workshops!
by Judy Nelson-Moore
Sponsored bi-annually by NMPCA, the “New Mexico Connections” workshop Gallimaufry 2018 will be held at Ghost Ranch from September 14 – 16. Defined as a jumble or medley, “gallimaufry” originates from a combination of French words meaning “to amuse oneself” and “to gorge oneself.” This is just what we will do with ceramic information for the weekend! Presenters represent different approaches. The weekend offers something for everyone and promises to be great fun with hands-on activities and exchanging of ideas. To learn more about this workshop and register, go to the NMPCA website at www.nmpca.com.
Six ceramic artists, all NMPCA members, will be workshop presenters, sharing their mastery of skills and techniques: Leonard Baca – Sprayed Glazes and Engobes, Sara D’Alessandro – Dynamics of Working Small and Large, Gloria Gilmore House –Refining Thrown Forms, Cheryl Hoagland – Freehand Faceting, Andrea Pichaida – Hand-building of Breathing Nests, and Penny Truitt – Exploring the Surface. Read more about the presentations.
Workshops at Ghost Ranch have been an NMPCA tradition for over 40 years. Since 2002, every other year the annual weekend workshop is devoted to a format called “New Mexico Connections.” On alternate years, a nationally-known artist is an invited workshop presenter. For “New Mexico Connections,” the format is multiple short presentations given on varied topics by several artists, usually NMPCA members from New Mexico, although presenters from as far away as California and New Zealand have been here. This has proven to be a very popular workshop attended by NMPCA members, as well as artists from other states. The modest workshop cost, interesting topics and techniques, Ghost Ranch setting, and camaraderie of participants has created some magical and memorable experiences. Social activities, such as slide presentations by presenters and of participants’ ceramic works, sharing a technique or ceramic piece, a pot-luck, or social time, are usually held in the evenings.
Workshop presenters offer their expertise for free and are invited to attend the other presenters’ sessions. Non-presenting participants pay a nominal workshop fee to help defray costs that include demo and hands-on materials, facility rental, publicity, and transportation, that usually results in a break-even workshop for NMPCA. Participants arrange and pay for accommodations and meals at Ghost Ranch or other places they choose to stay in the Abiquiu area.
Generally starting at 1 p.m. on Friday, the workshop is all day Saturday, and ends mid afternoon on Sunday. This requires two nights lodging and six meals at Ghost Ranch or other lodging and meal arrangements. Presentations are usually about one-and-a-half to two hours in length. If hands-on participation is included, length of the presentation is increased or split into two sessions, one for lecture/demo and one for hands-on activities. Frequently, a firing of some kind is included in the weekend. Tools are available at Ghost Ranch for use by presenters and participants. Sometimes participants are asked to bring special tools, bisque-fired work, or other supplies unique to a session.
Here’s a history of previous “New Mexico Connections” workshops: