2018 Summer Residency Sessions

Watershed’s summer sessions provide time and space for small groups of up to 15 artists to step away from their daily routines, immerse themselves in their work, and make new connections within the clay community.  During a residency, artists work independently in our large communal studio.  Most of the summer sessions are organized by artists—who propose a theme related to clay and recruit four to eight other artists to join them. The balance of participants in a session (seven to ten more artists) register here on our website, drawn by a shared interest in the session theme. Once in residence, all of the session’s artists work side-by-side in the Watershed studios.

During a summer session, you will have unlimited time to work and dialog in the studio alongside other artists-in-residence, delicious farm-to-table meals prepared for you, and comfortable accommodations in shared or private housing. When reviewing session options, consider choosing a theme that resonates with you, whether you want to delve more deeply into that focus or follow your own path of inquiry once you are here.

Watershed residencies are filled on a first-come, first served basis.  Simply fill out the registration form and submit your deposit.  Visit our housing and fees page to review the costs of attending a residency.  Please note that all artists are required to live on campus during a session. For those interested in applying for merit-based or need-based financial aid, the yearly application deadline is February 15 with awards announced in mid-March.

View details below on each of our 2018 summer sessions and register early to reserve your spot.

Session I: Breaking Tradition, June 3-15

Session Leader: Taylor Marie Carter
Guest Artist: Ben Medansky
With: Merida Anderson, Lindsey Hampton, Ali Karsh, Shannon Maldonado, and Ericka Leighton Spradlin


Ben Medansky

Explore new ways of designing, creating, and generating interest in your work during Watershed’s first 2018 summer session. Many artists have become savvy marketers as well as makers, which has led to a rapid change in how work is viewed, shared, and sold. The residency brings together artists, designers, and curators interested in exploring modes of sharing work beyond traditional gallery settings or storefronts. Participants will have time to create in the studio and discuss ways the ceramics field is evolving to reach a new and broader audience. The session will also include a guest presentation by Ayumi Horie.






Session II: Ceramics in a Transdisciplinary Studio, June 17-29

Session Leaders: Fawn Krieger & Emily Weiner

Emily Weiner

With: Suzanne Goldenberg, Wynne Greenwood, Keiko Narahashi, Amy Pleasant, Janine Polak, and Leah Raintree

The relationship between clay and other artistic media provides fertile ground for exploration. Artists who work in a variety of disciplines—from photography and video, to portraiture, painting, installation, and social practice—will come together to explore how clay can integrate with other methods and materials. Participants will have ample time to experiment in the studio and will meet for several brainstorming sessions in order to foster exchange and inspiration among group members.

This session is full, but we will contact those on the wait list if a space becomes available. 





Session III: Collective Makers, July 8-25

Meredith Host

Session Leaders: Members of Kansas City Urban Potters: Chandra Debuse, Paul Donnelly, Rain Harris, Meredith Host & Alex Watson

With: Tommy Frank, Kyla Toomey, and Kyle Triplett

After completing formal training, many artists discover that finding a creative community may become a challenge. Artistic collectives can provide support, encouragement, and visibility for those with independent studio practices. Join members of Kansas City Urban Potters to create work in the studio and discuss how collectives enhance your artistic growth and sense of connection. Salad Days, Watershed’s signature summer celebration, takes place during this session, and participants will have the opportunity to meet more than 500 ceramics enthusiasts during the event.

This session is full, but we will contact those on the wait list if a space becomes available. 




Session IV: Women, Ceramics, and Community, July 29-August 10

Session Leader: Normandy Alden
With: Mary Barringer, Nicole Gugliotti, Aisha Harrison, Robbie Lobell, Aysha Peltz, and Liz Quackenbush


Normandy Alden

This session will use Jenni Sorkin’s book, Live Form: Women, Ceramics and Community, to examine how women clay artists have influenced and shaped the ceramics field over the last seventy years. In addition to time spent together in the studio, participants will discuss women’s collective history in clay and how the current political and social climate plays a direct or indirect role in their work. The ceramists anchoring the session represent a wide range of experiences, ages, and perspectives.

This session has filled.  Click the button below to add your name to the wait list.  We will contact you if a spot in the session becomes available.





Session V: The Surface Exchange, August 12-24

Session Leader: Shanna Fliegel
Guest Artist: Mariko Paterson
With: Sukjin Choi, Melissa Mencini, Brooke Noble, and Adams Puryear

Mariko Paterson

Join a group of functional and sculptural artists to explore new ways of developing the surface of your work. Participating artists will brainstorm image generation, consider successful composition, experiment with creating depth through layering, and participate in collaborative art-making. During the two weeks together, artists will gain a wealth of information through informal sharing in the studio and will be encouraged to share processes and materials.

This session is full, but we will contact those on the wait list if a space becomes available.