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Hands On: A Ceramics Experience with Michelle Erickson ’82

April 19, 2023 @ 4:30 pm - 5:30 pm

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Students are invited to meet ceramic artist Michelle Erickson ’82 and learn about her new work in progress entitled “UNITY,” commissioned in collaboration with the Office of the President at William & Mary for the President’s Collection of Art and the Muscarelle Museum of Art and William & Mary.

After an introduction to the project, students will participate in the project by getting their hands in the clay and leaving handprints or handwriting — a cathartic lasting expression of their time at William & Mary as unique individuals and a united community.

Students who RSVP by April 17 will take home an Extraordinary Cupcake from the event!

“UNITY” was commissioned to commemorate the William & Mary community’s response to the challenges of the COVID pandemic. Erickson has designed a piece inspired by an early 1700s earthenware communal drinking vessel. The three-chambered “fuddling cup” was inscribed “HEARE IS A HEALTH TO K W” (King William). Erickson’s version incorporates clays from the William & Mary campus, sourcing her material from beneath students’ feet and conceptually drawing on histories hidden in that earth from its ancient origins and colonial past to the legacies that impact our present moment. The three interconnected drinking cups symbolize the shared experience of all and will transpose the original sentiment with those of “HUMANITY EQUALITY UNITY.”

Michelle Erickson ’82 is an independent ceramic artist and scholar. Internationally recognized for her mastery of colonial-era ceramic techniques, her pieces reinvent ceramic history to create 21st century social political and environmental narratives. Her ceramic art is represented in major museums including the Museum of Art and Design NY, the Seattle Art Museum and the Victoria and Albert Museum. Ms. Erickson’s rediscovery of historical ceramics techniques is widely published and her contemporary art is profiled in numerous national and international publications. She has designed and produced ceramics for major motion pictures such as The Patriot, and HBO’s series John Adams. Her upcoming solo exhibition Recasting Colonialism at the Baltimore Museum of Art opens May 7.


April 19, 2023
4:30 pm - 5:30 pm
Event Category:


Andrews Hall, William & Mary
605 Jamestown Rd
Williamsburg, VA 23185 United States
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