Winnie Owens-Hart, Robin W. Turnage and Jihan Thomas in conversation, sharing their research, learning and sharing of West African ceramics and how it has influenced their lives, art making and community building. This intimate discussion will include storytelling, short films, demonstrations of Ghana and Nigerian potter techniques and conversation with the audience.
WINNIE OWENS-HART is a recognized as an educator, artist, curator, scholar filmmaker, author and critical thinker in matters of clay, art and culture.
She taught at Howard University for more than 37 years and has conducted research, exhibited, and presented workshops and lectures nationally and internationally. She has work in the collections of the Smithsonian, Kohler, Everson, universities, and private collections. Owens-Hart is currently writing a book about the History of African American Ceramic Artist from the 18th to the 20th Century.
JIHAN A. THOMAS is a Black visual artist, arts educator, mother and ceramicist located in North Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. She has over 15 years’ experience working with ceramics and pottery. She has created community clay art programming with The Clay Studio of Philadelphia, Fleisher Art Memorial and The Free Library of Philadelphia. Jihan’s clay art is based in hand building and grounded in traditional Nigerian and Ghanaian pottery and vessel building. Jihan Is very interested in exploring the diverse language of African pottery and its diaspora. Jihan uses her creativity to empower others to access art and clay for restoration and wellness
ROBIN W. TURNAGE – Like all artists, Robin wants to preserve culture and do her part to save the world through making art. To assist in the preservation of culture, she has created a podcast called Potters of Color 2.0 . By using the podcast platform, Artists get to preserve and promote themselves bot as contemporary and historical Ceramic Artists. Robin enjoys spending much of her time providing art experiences for others. “I work with children and adults and I do a lot of work with people in recovery “. Her goals are also centered on the preservation of culture, through the practice and teaching of Traditional Afro-Indigenous Pottery techniques. “Additionally, my hands have lead me to create objects of ancestral ventilation so that everyone has a safe place for honoring loved ones who have transitioned. My work reflects the needs of two worlds: objects that are functional and ceremonial. The objects that I make span the spectrum of uses from ceremonial/tributary uses to daily lifestyle purposes.”