urlDear, Metalsmiths

The Maryland Institute College of Art (MICA) in Baltimore has recently announced their intention to close the Jewelry Center, a well-respected program with an international reputation. Classes are running through the end of the Spring semester in 2014 and the faculty and students at the Jewelry Center are fighting the decision. We, as a metals community, can’t afford to lose another college program. Please join us and show your support by signing the petition at the link provided and by writing personal letters to the President of the College, expressing why you believe metals and jewelry education is beneficial to an arts education and to our society. Letters can be addressed to
Fred Lazarus
Office of the President
Maryland Institute College of Art
1300 Mt. Royal Ave
Baltimore, MD 21217

Or President Lazarus can be emailed at

The petition can be found at

Please contact April Wood (Faculty/Jewelry Center) at with any questions regarding the situation or if you would like to offer or discuss ideas for bringing visibility and attention to the situation.

Thanks to ECU and the metals community for their amazing support. We hope to be able to share our love of metals and “making marks” with Baltimore and many students to come.

Best, April Wood


Happy Trails To You!

Thank you to everyone who came to the 2013 Material Topics Symposium “Making Marks”. This weekend was an perfect storm of talent, passion, and community and we are so thankful to everyone who attended .  We wish everyone Happy Trails on their way home and hope to see  you next year! A good amount of you also commented that you thought the website was a tad confusing and we are working on simplifying that. Stay tuned for what is in store in 2014!!!!


Friendly Symposium Staff

Material Topics: Making Marks starts today!

Hi Everyone,
Wow. We can’t believe that the time has flown by so quickly, but in person registration begins today. The symposium weekend is upon us and we couldn’t be more excited. Everyone is hurriedly scurrying to finish last minute details. The labels are being placed on our guests artwork. The registration table and labels are being printed. Its all coming together. We can’t wait to see all of you and we look forward to meeting you at our registration table in the foyer of the Jenkins Fine Art building either this evening from 5-7 or tomorrow morning.

Your Friendly Symposium Staff

Pack your bags! Symposium is Four Days Away!


We cant wait until this weekend!!!! Here are just a few last minute things!

  • Dont forget your toothbrush
  • If you are staying with someone please contact them if you have not already
  • Bring an air mattress or a sleeping bag if you are being hosted
  • When you register dont forget to pick up a schedule and turn in your charm, below are further charm swap instructions
  • HAVE FUN when you get here and enjoy the Art Walk Friday Afternoon!!!!

The charm swap at the ECU material topics symposium is always a lot of fun and full of anticipation as you never know whose charm you will receive!  It’s great to see everyone’s work on a small and personal level.

If this is your first time at the symposium, don’t worry, it’s no pressure – just go with it and use this as an opportunity to experiment with your charm.

When you register at the symposium you will turn in your charm.   Each charm is put in a lettered box (A,B,C,D).  On the back of your registration card will be written one of those letters (of course it won’t be the one we put your charm in); at the end of the evening – 7pm – charms will be handed out.

Some times it can get chaotic –  don’t worry, there is plenty to do if the line is a bit long at your lettered section, you can view the work at the “Off the Wall” Exhibition or grab a bite to eat.  Charms will be given out from 7pm-8pm so stay close to the art building and you’ll get your charm!


Your Friendly Symposium Staff

Need to Know…

jenkinsHello Everybody,

With the Symposium fast approaching we’re getting our final preparations in order and thought that since so many people are going to be new attendees this year that it would be helpful to put together a “need to know” post.  So, here goes.

First, for those who requested housing, please check your email for details.  If you have any questions, please email us at

Plan to arrive in the early evening on Friday January 18th.  We will have a registration table open in the main lobby of Jenkins Fine Arts Building (right off of 5th and Jarvis st.) from 5 -7 pm.  (Don’t worry if you miss it you can register on Saturday morning as well.)

At registration you will receive a nametag, your program, conference schedule, local maps, and flyers for art events.  Additionally, you may drop off your charm for the charm swap and we will also have a table for you to place any promotional materials or business cards you may have brought with you.

Conveniently, the Jenkins Fine Art Building also houses two fabulous exhibits to start you on the Greenville Art walk.  Both Off the Wall and All Fired Up: Enamel work from ECU’s Metal Design Alumni will be open for viewing.  After you’re done seeing those wonderful shows, it’s just a small jaunt to the Mendenhall Student Center where the 2nd floor gallery will showcase Upcycled—a multi-disciplinary show of work themed around recycling with awards juried by our esteemed presenter Christina Miller. These shows and so much more await you on the Greenville art walk.  The rest of the off campus destinations can be reached either by foot or if you prefer, by the symposium’s first ever transportation service provided by the Jolly Trolly!

We are all very excited to welcome you for what should be a wonderful weekend.  There are a few reminders however:

  • Please be respectful of your host.  We are opening our homes to you.
  • If you have signed up for Loring Taoka’s workshop, plan to bring a saw frame and needle files.
  • If you have signed up for Gary Schott’s workshop, plan to bring a saw frame and needle nose pliers.
  • And don’t forget your dancin’ shoes!

Below are links to local and campus maps.

See you soon,

Your Friendly Symposium Staff

Check out whats going down @ Dirty LAM Studios!


On January 18th a million awesome things will be happening from 6:00pm to 9:00pm for the Symposium Art Loop. This year we will have the famous Greenville “Jolly Trolly” taking Symposium participants around to see all of the events. Did we mention one of those events  is the cant miss shindig at Dirty LAM Studios?

You are invited to stop by and thaw out with cocktails, “dumplins” and ring sprints.  Refreshments at 7:00pm, solo ring sprints at 7:30pm.  Fastest maker will win a mystery prize!  Parking available, BYOB welcome, 213 W 9th St. Greenville, NC 27834.

Oh and dont forget to have a happy New Year!!


Your Friendly Symposium Staff.