Concrete Ideas


Demitra Thmoloudis will be demonstrating how to create hollow objects in concrete.  Silicone mold making, powder coating, resin, and acrylic surface techniques will also be covered.

About Demitra:

Demitra Thomloudis is a Visiting Assistant Professor at The University of Texas at El Paso. In August 2014 she concluded a 12-month residency at the Houston Center for Contemporary Craft. Demitra received her MFA from San Diego State University and her BFA from the Cleveland Institute of Art. Demitra’s work is exhibited and published nationally and internationally. Exhibitions include New Traditional Jewellery “Confrontations”  Netherlands; 2013 Beijing International Jewelry Art Biennial;, Galerie Marzee International Graduate Exhibition, Netherlands; Suspend(ed) in Pink, an international exhibition which traveled to Germany, United Kingdom, Austria, Paris, and the USA; CHAIN project at A CASA, Museum of Brazilian Object in São Paulo, Brazil; and La Fontera which debuted at Museo Franz Mayer, Mexico City and traveled within U.S. courtesy Velvet Da Vinci Gallery.  Publications include 500 Plastic and Resin Jewelry and 500 Enameled Objects published by Lark Books, The Art of Jewelry: Plastic & Resin: Techniques, Projects and Inspiration and most recently in 2014 Behind the Brooch: A Closer Look at Backs, Catches, and Pin Stems, By Lorena Argulo and published by Schiffer.


Goodbye for Now!

goodbye-for-now-blogThank you so much for making the 2014 ECU symposium the BEST ONE YET! Check out some of the pics from that awesome weekend below, and don’t forget to stay tuned in for updates on next years Symposium.

Until then goodbye for now friends!

Sincerely, Your friendly ECU Symposium Staff

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Symposium Presentors Part 9: Bruce Pepich

Bruce Pepich Headshot

Lecture: The Museum as Muse

In addition to serving as resources for public education, museums help shape the culture around metalsmithing by their collections and exhibitions. Bruce W. Pepich will address the role museums have in this process and how contemporary artists can participate.

Bio: Bruce W. Pepich is the Executive Director and Curator of Collections of the Racine Art Museum and the Charles A. Wustum Museum of Fine Arts. In the 1990s he assembled one of the most significant contemporary craft collections found in any art museum in North America. He opened RAM in 2003 in downtown Racine as a second campus that is home to this collection.

Pepich curates exhibitions from RAM’s 8,000 piece collection and regularly presents lectures on contemporary crafts around the country. He is a published writer and has served as a juror for over 100 national and international art competitions and fellowship awards. In 2012, he was inducted as an Honorary Fellow into the American Craft Council’s College of Fellows.

Participants Exhibition Submissions!!


Dear Symposium Participant-

If you are submitting a piece in the Participant Exhibition for the upcoming 2014 Material Topics Symposium please print out and fill out the below form, include this information inside your package.

Send work to: ATT: Steven Hall, School of Art and Design
Leo Jenkins Fine Arts Center Rm 2000, Mail Stop 502 Greenville, NC 27858

Please contact Steven Hall at for questions regarding the Exhibition.

The deadline for receiving work is Saturday, January 4th.
We look forward to seeing you at the Symposium, have a great New Years!!

ECU2014 Participant Exhibition

Symposium Presentors Part 8: Cappy Counard


perception. open

Workshop description:


Open it. Close it.


In this workshop, I will share with you my longtime fascination with hinges and mechanisms. My demonstration will focus on the materials and techniques needed to make strong, reliable hinges (while hopefully demystifying the challenge of soldering all of those tiny little parts!). We will also talk about a wide range of catches, including making your own wire threads. These demonstrations, along with numerous examples of historic and contemporary work, will illustrate how hinges and mechanisms can enhance your containers and jewelry.

perception. side




Cappy Counard has been a professor of Metals/Jewelry at Edinboro University of Pennsylvania since 1999. She earned her MFA from Southern Illinois University at Carbondale and her BS in Art from the University of Wisconsin-Madison. She makes jewelry and vessels that explore the intersection of structure and emotion, logic and memory, searching and being still. In addition to exhibiting both nationally and internationally, Cappy is the recipient of two individual artist fellowships from the Pennsylvania Council on the Arts and her work has been featured in many books including, Art Jewelry Today 3, 21st Century Jewelry: The Best of the 500 Series and The Metalsmith Book of Boxes and Lockets.


Symposium Presentors Part 7: Adam Kenney

Introducing one of the many lectures that will be taking place in just a few weeks!!


Adam Kenney is the Executive Director of Touchstone Center for Crafts in Farmington, Pa. He earned a Master of Arts Management degree from Carnegie Mellon University in 2009. Before transitioning to arts management, Kenney spent over a decade as a professional glassblower, and held positions in a wide range of studio settings. These professional experiences include managing high-volume production studios, participating in residencies at university fine arts programs, and assisting internationally renowned glass artists like Stephen Rolfe Powell and Curtiss Brock. Kenney has conducted professional development sessions for a variety of organizations and institutions that support makers such as the Tamarack Foundation, The Society of North American Goldsmiths, Creative Crafts Council, Edinboro University, Slippery Rock University, and Indiana University of Pennsylvania. When his duties at Touchstone allow, he continues to produce mixed media sculpture and vessels for his line of glass hollowware, Aka Glass (

In his presentation, Balancing Act: A Holistic Approach to Developing a Sustainable Creative Career Kenney will ask makers to reconsider their creative careers as a complex synthesis of personal, financial, professional, and artistic goals. He will highlight the usefulness of nonprofit administration concepts like Strategic Planning and S.W.O.T. Analysis to enable artists to make the most three-dimensional and “data driven” career decisions. These strategically sound career decisions should guide the emerging artist down a professional path where personal, financial, professional, and artistic goals are equalized as much as possible.

Symposium Presentors Part 6: Arthur Hash!!

We are super duper exited to announce this years demonstration by Arthur Hash – Water Etching and Champleve Enamels!!!

In this demo students will learn to combine a low tech salt water etching process with traditional enameling to make one-of-a-kind jewelry. We will cover salt-water etching with the enameling technique of champlevé.

Arthur is an Instructor and technician in the metals program at State University of New York-New Paltz; two Virginia Museum of Fine Arts fellowships, American Craft Council Searchlight Artist; exhibitions: Quirk Gallery (VA), Facere Gallery (Seattle), Society of Arts and Crafts (Boston), Velvet da Vinci (San Francisco), Oregon College of Arts and Crafts.


Your Friendly Symposium Staff

Symposim Presentors part 3: Avery Lucas


Our next presenter is a magician at moving metal around, she is also one of the coolest ladysmiths around!

May we present Avery Lucas!!

Title/Topic: Chasing and Repousse Techniques: Chasing Relief


Chasing and repousse has been used since ancient times to emboss sheet metal into patterns, textures, and images. The French term repousse literally translates as ‘to push out’ and refers to forming metal out from the backside. By using heat, hammers, and chasing tools, this demonstration will utilize the malleable quality of metal to achieve high and low relief. From large to small, these decorative forming techniques can be applied to enhance the visual vocabulary of jewelry, sculptures, and functional objects.

Emphasis of the demonstration will be on showing my own process. I use forming and chasing as a way of developing a three-dimensional drawing through mark making.

An artist talk will underline how my studio practice has become a push and pull of tool marks against copper as I cultivate my relationship between material and my own hands. The hammered skin of the metal becomes a reflection of my own body. These objects catalog my own kinesthetic understanding and analysis of human emotion. Making always opens another door, asks another question, and gives me the yearning to chase after myself. All the while, I rely on my own two hand define and articulate a space within which to operate as a maker.


Originally from Cape Ann, Massachusetts, Avery Lucas has lived in the Providence area since she was an undergraduate at Rhode Island College, graduated in 2009. In addition, Avery received with her Master of Fine Arts degree in Jewelry/Metals from the University of Massachusetts – Dartmouth, in 2012. Avery is moving towards the future while she builds up her own studio and pursues a professional life as an artist. In 2013, Avery’s metal work won “Best Of” Contemporary Art Month for a featured exhibition at Equinox Gallery in San Antonio, Texas. Avery has also lectured and taught workshops at Rhode Island College, State University of New York – New Paltz, and at the Fuller Craft Museum.


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.

Its almost swapping time!



The following info is for those of you who are attending for the first time this year or if you just need a reminder about how the charm swap works

Here are the things to know:

  • When you register on the morning of Jan 18th, please give your one charm ( in an unnamed or unlabeled box) to an attendant at the registration table. Dont forget having a business card inside your package is a good idea!
  • Saturday evening the charm swap will start. Along with the exhibition reception for “Off the Wall = Structural Adornment”, and of course our famous T-shirt booth will be open as well!!
  • During the evening the person at the charm swap desk will call up everyone in groups to pull the box with the corresponding number on your name tag. NO PEEKING!!   After you pick your charm we highly suggest you try to find the person who made your charm. Hooray for making metal head friends!

If anyone has any questions, please feel free to email us @

Happy Making!


Your Friendly Symposium Staff.


A Few Reminders


Greetings Friends!

The Symposium date is quickly approaching! We have a few reminders about registration.

-Remember that EARLY registration ends on December 10th. You will still be able to register after that date but will be assessed a $15 late fee in addition to registration costs.

-Remember to email your registration form in addition to paying your fee. Be sure to fill out the form completely. Don’t forget to include which workshops you are interested in attending (we will do our best to accommodate your preferences).


Your Friendly Symposium Staff


Ok metal heads, the time is upon us! The Dates of This years Symposium are January 18-20 , 2013. Registration is open from Oct 31 until December 10th. You can still register after that time but a $15 dollar late fee will be added to your registration cost. We are only able to take a limited amount of people with housing requests so please sign up ASAP! At the top right of this page you will see a little 2013 registration button, click there to start the registration process!

Happy Hammering!


Your Friendly ECU Symposium Staff


Just some things you might need to know to fill out the registration…
Workshops by day…

Saturday:  10–12:30 and 1:30–4:00

Carrie Longley : Creating the Ceramic specimen

Kathryn Osgood: Color, Texture, and Form

Jillian Moore: New Resin Surface Techniques

James Thurman:  Thurmanite and Cold Connections

Sunday: 10-12:30 and 1:30-4:00

Autumn Brown: Ceramics and Metal

Loring Taoka: Makin’ it Pop

Jennifer Wells:  Exploring enamels and connections

Gary Schott: Making a Small Toy

Dianne Reilly/Joost During: Marriage of Metalsmiths

Also, if you are unfamiliar with pay pal or don’t have a pay pal account…that’s ok.  Pay Pal allows you to pay as a guest without registering for a pay pal account. All you need is a credit or debit card.

We can’t wait to see you and please email with any questions you may have or feel free to comment on the blog with your questions.