In January Adrienne Eliades visited us here in Savannah, and did a workshop on surface decoration at Savannah’s Clay Spot. After the workshop we got a chance to sit down and ask her some questions.
SAVCC: What got you interested in clay?
Adrienne: I’ve always done clay, since I was a little kid. My mom was an artist. She always made it really easy for me to draw or paint or take classes. I worked with Sculpey clay and did projects in elementary school and high school, you know the embarrassing stuff. Once I went to college I ended up in North Carolina and as you know NC has a great history with clay. Honestly I went to school there because I wanted to be near the beach. It didn’t have anything to do with knowing what I wanted to be when I grew up. UNCW only has a BA, but the professor there Aaron Wilcox is really great and really engaging. He went to Cranbrook and has all that theory in his teaching. I decided to do clay for my major there. I did an honors thesis about the local clay and the history of NC potters. I fell in love with the lifestyle of it. After school, it felt really natural to find myself working in the studios of different artists. I worked for a tile muralist Gayle Tustin, and Justine Ferreira who had a gallery in downtown Wilmington. I was seeing all of these different ways of making a living as an artist that I didn’t learn in school, and thought “I can do this”. The love of making things that can be useful in people’s lives kept drawing me back. I always had another job, like working for artists, or working in restaurants. Something part time that allowed me to be in the studio at night.