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Greenwich Nonprofit Awarded $10,000 Grant To Document Clay Artists

Sinclair Ashley of Chattanooga, Tenn. is among the clay artists being added to The Marks Project database.
Sinclair Ashley of Chattanooga, Tenn. is among the clay artists being added to The Marks Project database. Photo Credit: contributed

GREENWICH, Conn. -- The Marks Project of Greenwich has been awarded a $10,000 grant to document the clay artists of the Southern Highland Craft Guild to be added to a larger database of American studio ceramics working since 1946.

This research is supported by a Craft Research Fund grant from The Center for Craft, Creativity & Design, Inc. Both the center and the guild are based in Asheville, N.C. and are nonprofits, as is The Marks Project.

As one of the largest regional craft communities in the U.S., the guild extends over nine states — Alabama, Georgia, Kentucky, Maryland, North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee, Virginia and West Virginia — and lists 191 active clay arts members and 194 former members.

Stephanie Moore, executive director of the center, said The Marks Project has “revolutionized research” and has made “a valuable contribution to awareness of clay artists.”

The collaboration, says Martha Vida, founder and executive director of The Marks Project, “will make the artists part of the accessible record, broadly visible across the U.S. and internationally, and give them an increased presence in the larger marketplace of collectors, writers, researchers and curators.”

A campaign is under way to raise additional funding in support of this Southern database documentation project.

Since it was established in 2012, The Marks Project has created an illustrated searchable online database of 1,300 American studio ceramic artists and their marks, signatures, back stamps or other identifying symbols and biographical data. The list is available to the public without fee or advertising.

Over the next 18 months, the regional documentation project of the guild is to add clay artists from the nine states of the Appalachians, providing increasing coverage of clay artists.

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