We’re excited to welcome four new artists into Penland’s Core Fellowship—Mia Kaplan, SaraBeth Post, Erica Schuetz, and Scott Vander Veen! They will join returning fellows Joshua Fredock, L Gnadinger, Kento Saisho, Katherine Toler, and Devyn Vasquez in late February 2019 to begin their two-year fellowships.
“I have learned that the life of an artist can be beautiful and rewarding, but also complicated and discouraging…I have been most creative and productive while in an immersive and collaborative environment.”
Mia currently works in Indianapolis, IN and is a recent graduate of Earlham College, where she received a BA in Visual Arts. While at Earlham Mia worked for three years in exhibit and education development at the Joseph Moore Museum, an interactive science museum, and as a studio tech in the Earlham metals department. She has also interned at Brooklyn Metal Works (NY) and Liberty Arts Sculpture Studio & Foundry (NC). Mia received a work-study scholarship for a summer metals workshop at Penland in 2017 and is excited to return as a core fellow to expand her technical and professional knowledge in metals as well as explore other media, specifically her interest in textiles. Mia is a North Carolina native who grew up in Durham.
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“A strong sense of community is absolutely essential for me. I have been propelled by the generosity and encouragement of my community.”
SaraBeth lives and works in the Penland area, dividing her time between two jobs and her studio practice. As Enrichment Coordinator for the Rural Education Partners of Mitchell County, she works mainly with middle school students to make art an integral and accessible part of their lives. She is also the Program Development Coordinator at the North Carolina Glass Center in Asheville. SaraBeth has a BFA with a concentration in glass from the University of Louisville (KY) and has been a student and studio assistant in several Penland workshops since 2014. She has also worked as cold shop coordinator at Pilchuck Glass School (WA) and as an assistant and studio tech at The Studio at the Corning Museum of Glass (NY).
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“I’m inspired by people unafraid to take risks and step off the path of least resistance, and who want to learn forever.”
Erica recently transitioned out of her 5-year role as Adult Education & Family Literacy Instructor and Coordinator at Briya Public Charter School in Washington, DC to work and travel abroad for a year; she is currently volunteering as a teacher for refugees in Greece. After years as an educator who teaches “through a lens of social justice,” Erica is excited to devote time and attention to making, experimenting, and exploring new craft skills, ideas, and connections. Erica holds a BA from St. Mary’s College of Maryland. She has been to Penland twice as a work-study student in wood; has taken classes at the Corcoran College of Art & Design (MD) and Haystack School of Crafts (ME); and has been a volunteer and part-time letterpress instructor at Pyramid Atlantic Arts Center (MD).
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Scott Vander Veen
“I find that creative practice flourishes when it is shared closely with others, and I aim to create relationships as much as I aim to push my work.”
Scott currently works in New York City as a fabricator and art handler at Novo Arts. He has also worked as a muralist, studio intern, and studio assistant at the Freehand Hotel, Dieu Donne Papermill, and Jeffrey Gill Studio respectively. Scott earned a BA from Bard College with a combined focus in studio arts, literature, history, art history, and writing. Having never been to Penland, Scott is excited to explore new processes, materials, and potential interactions between materials. He is interested in the balance between experimentation and technical skill and an “urge to connect more deeply with creative tradition.”
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This year we received 72 applications from across the United States for the Core Fellowship Program. As always, there were many more fantastic candidates than openings. Our selection committee did an excellent job reviewing and evaluating applications, putting in many hours and lively conversations. A sincere thank you to everyone involved in this year’s selection.
And last but not least, we congratulate five outstanding core fellows who will leave the program in early 2019: Stormie Burns, Elliot Earl Keeley, Sarah Rose Lejeune, and Corey Pemberton. We wish them the best of everything ahead and will follow their inevitable successes with pride.