McKnight Ceramics continues for over 10 years


Morgan Reddekopp

McKnight Ceramics Exhibition is currently taking place in Watkins Gallery until Oct. 4. The exhibition featured work from six artists who have previously received a grant from the McKnight foundation.

Morgan Reddekopp, Editor-in-Chief

Watkins Gallery, located on the Winona State University campus, is currently hosting its annual McKnight Ceramics Exhibition. Winona State has hosted this exhibition for over 10 years.

The exhibition opened Sept. 18, and will remain open until Oct. 4.

On Wednesday, Sept. 25, there was an artist talk and reception in Watkins Hall. Artist Brett Freund came to Winona State from Minneapolis to talk about his work.

Freund is one of six artists featured in this year’s McKnight Ceramics Exhibition. Other featured artists include Donovan Palmquist (Minnesota), Derek Au (New York), Linda Cordell (Pennsylvania), Ian Meares (Arkansas) and Bryan Czibesz (New York).

Each of the featured artists received a grant from the McKnight Foundation in the last couple years.

Freund and Palmquist, both residents of Minnesota, received the McKnight Artist Fellowship for Ceramic Artists. The other four artists received McKnight Artist Residency for Ceramic Artists in 2017, which allowed them to come make art in Minnesota.

The pamphlets outside the exhibition explain the McKnight Artist grants further.

“The programs provide two forms of direct financial support to ceramic artists: two fellowships are awarded annually to outstanding mid-career Minnesota ceramic artists, [and] four residency awards are granted each year to artists from outside Minnesota for a three-month stay at Northern Clay Center,” the pamphlet states.

Breund elaborated, saying residents of Minnesota solely received money, and out-of-state artists received their grant to come to the Clay Center in Minnesota.

“Minnesota is a great state for grants and opportunities for artists,” Breund said.

Jennifer Lovejoy, an art student at Winona State, attended Breund’s artist talk. She enjoyed Breund’s use of slideshow and said he was both humorous and informative.

“I liked how he got into so much detail. It was interesting to hear him discuss his influences,” Lovejoy said. “Through his slides, it was possible to see how a fascination with graffiti evolved and became a part of his current work. He also discussed work by other artists and how their work influenced his.”

Breund said he enjoyed the community he experienced through the McKnight Artist Fellowship for Ceramic Artists.

“The nicest thing about the McKnight Program is that you don’t have to go through it yourself,” Breund said.

Breund was able to make friends with the other artists that helped him through the program. He said the staff was also a major part of his success.

After the artist talk, Breund joined students and faculty in attending a reception located just outside the exhibition.

The McKnight Ceramics Exhibition will remain at Winona State in Watkins Gallery until Oct. 4. It is a travelling exhibition and will move on after it’s stay in Winona.