Joshua Kuensting

Penland Core Studio


Joshua lives in Logan, Utah. He is currently pursuing graduate studies in ceramics at Utah State University.


What years were you a core student?



Who were you a core student with?

I had the delightful opportunity to spend two years with Marianne "Dr" Dages, Christina Boy, Beth "Shy-Bull" Schaible and Wes "Broheim" Stitt.  I only had one year to spend with Andrew Hayes, Kreh Mellick, Dana Fehsenfeld and Shane "Shaner" Darwent in my first year.  During my second year I got to spend time with Jason Burnett, Leah Frost, Jessica Heikes and Mark "Brother Bear" Warren.


Are you still in touch with any of your fellow core students?

I try to get a chat in with a few folks a couple of times a year, and I am always amazed with what I see them accomplishing via various inter web sources.


What was your best moment as a core student?

Best moments were many, especially in my first year. I had never been to Penland before I got into core so getting to see and do everything for the first time was a real treasure. The night of my first Core Show was perfection.


What was your worst?

My last fall concentration. I was mentally and emotionally drained after 2 years of Penlandia. I feel like I missed out on some positive relationships with people because I was too out it.


What is your favorite spot on campus?

Wood shop and iron shop in winter.


What was your favorite meal at the Pines?

Vietnamese sandwich day. Mouth still waters thinking about the sweet daikon relish.


What was your least favorite?

Any meal that we burned or messed up my first year when I was an evening cook assistant.


Do you still have anything that you made as a core student? Or anything that you traded for?

I still have my blacksmithing tools that I made during a tool making concentration. I still have my favorite mug trade from Alix Knipe, some great photos from Shane Darwent and David Wolfe, a drawing from Steph Thompson and some prints from Beth Shaible and Ele Annand.


What class you took had the most impact on you? Did you realize it at the time?

Loosen Up with Ron Meyers and Chuck Hindes assisted by Josh Floyd and Peter Olsen. I had no idea that this class and a chat over red zinfandel would put me on my current path in life.


Is there something that you learned in the core program that you never expected to learn?

During my time in core my values didn't change but everything that I valued did. I had never been in a supportive, creative environment before and I thank Mark Boyd and Leslie Noell for giving me the opportunity to develop my creative capacity.


Tell us about someone you met through the core program who you'll never forget?

Wes Stitt is one of the most beautiful men in this world; our coffee and or beer time chats kept me afloat. Alix Knipe helped me understand what is important in my life and work. Paulus Berensohn taught me how to be open. Jean McLaughlin's work ethic and dedication to a cause is something I try to emulate.


What are you doing today?

Trying to get a handle on my future as a graduate student.


Fill in the blank: If I had never been a core student I would not be the man I am today. My time at Penland was a gift.