Inspiration and Industrial Processes

Don Friedlich Bio for Demo Photo

Don Friedlich received his BFA in Jewelry and Metalsmithing from Rhode Island School of Design in 1982. He has served as President of the Society of North American Goldsmiths and Chair of the Editorial Advisory Board for Metalsmith magazine. Don has lectured at conferences and schools all over the U.S. and abroad. His work is in the permanent collections of the Victoria and Albert Museum, the Smithsonian American Art Museum, the Museum of Fine Arts Boston, the Schmuckmuseum, Pforzheim, Germany, the Corning Museum of Glass, the Museum of Fine Arts Houston and the Los Angeles County Museum among many others. Don will be giving both a lecture and workshop at this years symposium.

Don Friedlich Demo Photo

Don will speak about the development of his groundbreaking jewelry and the sources that have continued to inspire him. Attention will be brought to the sculptures of Isamu Noguchi and Andy Goldsworthy. Don will also address the simplicity of Japanese design and the vitality of the Southwest American landscape.

Don’s workshop will explore the use of industrial processes and the creative ways that artists can utilize them. His demonstration will present resources used in industry and give examples of how savvy artists were able to take advantage of techniques including photo etching, water jet cutting and rapid prototyping to help create one of a kind or production objects. An informal discussion period will follow.

Beyond the Basics

Barbara Minor Bio Photo

Barbara Minor is known for her distinctive enamel jewelry, innovative enameled beads and unique enameled vessels. She is a studio artist living and working in Baton Rouge, Louisiana. Barbara’s recent work has been focusing on researching experimental techniques using enamel. These new works explore the use of liquid enamels in combination with powdered enamel on forms made of copper foil or screen and steel. Her work has been shown throughout the U.S. and abroad, both in galleries and major juried craft shows. Barbara also conducts workshops, lectures and demos on a variety of enameling and metalsmithing techniques. Her work has been featured in 500 Enamel Objects, The Art of Enameling and Art Jewelry Today.

Barbara Minor Demo Photo

In her workshop, Barbara will be demonstrating how to create complex images using enamel. Repetition and illusion of texture will be emphasized utilizing screen printing techniques with enamel. The layering of images will be shown using both opaque and transparent enamels. Dry silkscreen printing allows for results not possible with stencils or that are too tedious to complete by hand more than once. The basics of enameling will be given appropriate attention and Barbara will also demonstrate how to design, expose and mount screens for use with enamels.

Meddling Meticulously

Boris Bally Bio Photo

Boris Bally is a Swiss-trained metalsmith and designer working in Providence, Rhode Island, where he maintains a small studio business, Bally Humanufactured, LLC. Boris has been interviewed for the Smithsonian Archives of American Art and his work has earned him numerous fellowships and awards, including two RISCA Design fellowships, first prize at the International Green Dot Awards, as well as being a finalist in both the 2013 Eco Arts Awards and the 2009 International Spark Design Awards. His work has been featured in numerous publications, international exhibitions and public collections, which include London’s V&A Museum, Museum of Fine Arts Boston, Museum of Art & Design New York, Carnegie Museum of Art Pittsburgh, Brooklyn Museum, Luce Foundation Center, Renwick Gallery and Cooper Hewitt National Design Museum.

Boris Bally Lecture Photo

We are honored to have Boris as our capstone presenter. He will be speaking about the development of his studio business model and the unique ways he is able keep his business fresh and exciting. His talk will include the evolution of post-academic life over three decades, the motivation behind his branding and also the progression of his personal aesthetic that helped drive it. Boris will detail his “four prong mission”, and how it has impacted his brand and business’ survival. He will give detailed examples of his failures, successes, and how they drive each other to overcome the constant challenges of our field.

Building a Narrative in Glass & Metal

Greetings all!

The introductions and descriptions for our artists will continually be posted over the next following days. The postings will give details on lectures and workshops as well as a bit of background info about our featured artists. Another reminder that registration begins on the 15th!

Martha Banyas Bio for Demo Photo

Martha Banyas previously taught printmaking, metals, and enameling at Mt. Hood College in Portland, Oregon. She began focusing on enameling and eventually resigned her tenured position in 1985 to become a world traveler. Her experiences in Indonesia, South East Asia and Eastern Europe have influenced her work. In 2005, she returned to the studio as a full time artist, where she seeks to create a unified system of imagery, technique and aesthetic intention. Martha has lectured and taught enameling workshops extensively in the US, Canada, and Japan and has had numerous solo and group exhibitions regionally, nationally and internationally

“Guardians, Restoring Balance”, 2010 Enamel, copper, wood backing

Martha’s workshop will discuss how to develop a sculptural narrative in enamel. She will explain her process of drawing and pattern making. Martha will demonstrate the preliminary steps of forming, applying counter-enamel and base coats and the transfer of drawings. The successive steps of under glazing, firing, over glazing and finishes will also be explored.

We are honored to have Martha as our Keynote speaker for this year’s symposium. She will be examining the nature of experience, life’s fluctuations, coming to terms with illness and the recovery that follows. Barbara will also speak about her current work and the journey through its origins, iconography and history and the unpredictable outcomes that were a result of her explorations.

Announcing 2016 Presenters!


Our 2016 Presenters!!

This year we have another fantastic group of artists. We hope you are just as excited as we are for these presenters!

Keynote: Martha Banyas

Capstone: Boris Bally

Lectures by:

  • Don Friedlich
  • Kathleen Browne
  • Kate Lydon
  • Lauren Tickle
  • Leah Pierce

Break-out Sessions:

  • Barbara Minor
  • James Meyer
  • Don Friedlich
  • Martha Banyas
  • Abigail Huess
  • Ben Dory
  • Stephen Yusko
  • Jason Dowdle

Now that you know, you should keep looking forward to more information about:

Calls for Entry

Workshop and Lecture descriptions

Gallery Hop

You can't touch this.


Greetings All!

The blog lives! Classes are in full swing here at East Carolina University and we have missed you! Fret not; for we have not forgotten about you, in fact we have been planning, organizing and trying not to go crazy all spring and summer to bring you yet another exciting symposium. Registration for this year will begin on October 15th. Mark it in your calendar! We will be sure to remind everyone through the blog a few days beforehand as well, so keep an eye out.

This year our Co-Chairs include Barbara McFadyen, Hosanna Rubio and Kayla Staigvil.

Barbara McFadyen earned her BA in Creative Arts at Eckerd College in Jewelry Design and Silversmithing, and is currently in her second year of the MFA program in Metal Design at East Carolina University. Barbara’s work explores a variety of contemporary and traditional enamel techniques, including Basse-Taille and Limoges, with jewelry fabrications in silver and gold. Recently, she combines her love of metal and enamel with the art of bookmaking, drawing her inspiration from the natural world and her personal experiences of love and loss. Barbara has always been fascinated with birds and adores dogs.

Hosanna Rubio has a BA in Art Education from California State University Long Beach, where she also studied metals and jewelry, and is in her second year of the MFA program in Metal Design at East Carolina University. Her work uses a blend of techniques including enameling and casting, and draws from her personal experiences with issues such as health, medicine, and religion. She has way too many cats.

Kayla Staigvil earned her BFA in Jewelry/Metalsmithing at Edinboro University, where she learned traditional smithing techniques. She is currently earning her MFA and is at the end of her second year in the Metals Design program at ECU. Kayla’s work incorporates filigree, antique porcelain, doll parts, pearls and other mixed media to create wearable assemblages. Her work deals with concepts of beauty, surrealism and the abject body. She is also self-described crazy cat lady.

Please look forward to more posts regarding:

  • Presenter and Workshop Information
  • Calls for Entries, we have many interesting themes for shows this year
  • Exhibitions, Pop-Ups, Gallery Hop, Oh my!

Ready, Set, Smith!

After the Art Walk on Friday night, be sure to stop by Dirty Lam Studios for Saw, File, Solder races!  The game is on starting at 7:30.


The Dirty Lam is studio home to ECU alums Andy Denton, (MFA 2011, work pictured above) and Jordan Parah, (BFA 2014, below).


Bonus!  The Nu Clear Twins will provide some tunes during Saw File Solder races at Dirty Lam Studios.

*Dirty Lam is located at 213 W 9th Street.  This is a BYOB event for those of age.

Side note- we’d love to see your pictures through out the weekend!  Please use #craftingconnections2015 on Facebook and Instagram pics!