Brian Harper, Executive Director
Brian is the founder of Artaxis and currently serves as the Executive Director. In addition to being a practicing artist, he is also an Associate Professor of Fine Art and Ceramics Area Head at Indiana University Southeast. His artwork investigates our inherent human wonderment of the unknown and the methods, mythological or otherwise, for how we give structure to elements of our observed, unobserved, and unobservable world. His work has been exhibited in over 70 national and international exhibitions, including 7 solo exhibitions. He lives in New Albany, Indiana, with his wife Tiffany and their two dogs, Oliver and Oslo.
Alanna DeRocchi, President
Alanna is originally from Petersburg, Illinois. She received a BFA from Western Illinois University in 2004, and an MFA from the New York State College of Ceramics at Alfred University in 2010. Since finishing her education, she has participated in several ceramic artist residency programs, including the ClayArch Gimhae Museum Ceramic Arts Residency in Jilllye, South Korea, and the Archie Bray Foundation for the Ceramic Arts in Helena, MT. Alanna has exhibited in numerous museums and galleries across the United States and internationally. She recently was awarded a faculty development grant to help further her personal studio research at the University of Alaska, Anchorage, where she is currently a Term Instructor of Art and Technician in Ceramics.
Adam Welch, Vice President
Adam Welch is an artist whose work is about making, labor, and decoration. Through forming, manipulating and the incorporation of design, documentation and intervention, his art explores history and material culture through one object – the brick. He is a widely read critic in such venues as Clay Times, Ceramics Art and Perception, Ceramics Monthly, and The Log Book. Adam began working at Greenwich House Pottery in 2003, was appointed Assistant Director in 2007 and Director in 2010. He began teaching at Princeton University in 2010, when he was appointed Lecturer in the Visual Arts Program. He holds a MFA in Ceramics from Virginia Commonwealth and a BFA in Art with a minor in Art Education from Northern Arizona University in Flagstaff, Arizona. He currently lives in Hightstown, New Jersey with his wife, Rachel, a fashion designer, and their two daughters.
Dandee Pattee, Secretary
Dandee is an artist in residence at Red Dirt Studios in the Washington, DC area. She is a Assistant Professor at Gallaudet University, an adjunct professor at George Washington University, and Montgomery College she also an instructor at Baltimore Clayworks. Dandee holds a MFA from the University of Florida in ceramics and an MA in Critical Studies from the Maryland Institute College of Arts. She is currently serving a three year term as an NCECA Director at Large. She has written articles for Ceramics Ireland, Ceramics Art and Perception, and is a contributing writer for East City Arts Magazine in the DC area. Dandee chooses to make functional pots because she enjoys the parameters of functionality and the narrative created between her work and those that interact with the pieces.
Samuel Johnson, Treasurer
Samuel is an Associate Professor of Art at the College of Saint Benedict and Saint John’s University. Samuel has participated in sixty-eight exhibitions, including seven solo exhibitions. His work is in the permanent collection of the North Dakota Museum of Art and featured in the book, Stoked: Five Artists of Fire and Clay. Samuel grew up on the western prairie of the Red River Valley, outside of Breckenridge, Minnesota. Before earning his MA and MFA from the University of Iowa in 2005, he apprenticed with Richard Bresnahan, studied ceramic design at the Danish Design School in Copenhagen, Denmark, and worked in Japan as a studio guest of Koie Ryoji. He lives in St. Joseph, Minnesota, with his wife, Anne, and their four children, Harriet, Jesse, Ingrid, and Francine.
Lauren Gallaspy, Board Member
Lauren received her BFA in ceramics at the University of Georgia in 2005 and her MFA from the New York State College of Ceramics at Alfred University in 2007. From 2009 to 2012, Lauren served as co-director Trace Gallery in Athens, Georgia. In 2013, NCECA named her an Emerging Artist, and she was one of 25 artists awarded the Joan Mitchell Painters & Sculptors Grant for 2012. Lauren has exhibited nationally and internationally in over 50 group and solo exhibitions since 2007 and is currently an Assistant Professor of Fine Arts at the University of Utah in Salt Lake City.
Dylan Beck, Board Member
Dylan is the Ceramics Department Head at the Oregon College of Art and Craft and a practicing studio artist in Portland, OR. He also serves on the board for Watershed Center for the Ceramic Arts and is the On-site Liaison for NCECA 2017. Dylan has exhibited and lectured extensively and published articles in Ceramics: Art and Perception, CFile, and the NCECA Journal. His work focuses on the built environment, including concepts dealing with urban development, the information infrastructure, and the economic, social, and psychological effects of living in a super-modern world.