Decorative arts display social status and reflect a culture's priorities and values, as well as being utilitarian objects. These craft objects can become icons of a culture--functioning as symbols of national and personal identity. I am interested in this ability of pottery to speak for their owner, maker and culture. Research into craft traditions is essential to my studio practice. This research takes the form of reading anthropological and archaeological studies, art history and ceramic books, as well as careful examination of historical pottery during museum visits, and getting extremely excited by architectural details and the coffee mug at the diner.
I work with diverse populations, and believe it is vital to meet my student where they are creatively and personally. The students I work with--enthusiastic adult hobbyists, 1st graders, adolescents in a juvenile detention center, and high-school students in an intensive summer program--all have vastly different needs and goals from their creativity. I like to have a conversation with my students and learn what they are interested in and what makes making art fun. I want to get excited with them about their art and ideas, not impose my project parameters. For me, the most important part of teaching art is not training future artists but enabling someone's sense of agency and ability to transform and control something in the physical world.
Adma graduated from Tyler School of Art, Temple University with a BFA in Ceramics and Glass, Summa Cum Laude with Honors in 2011. That same year he was awarded the prestigious Windgate Fellowship, a $15,000 grant that supported his studio practice and research. Ledford conducted research into historical ceramics by observing and handling pottery in museum storage. This research brought him to many museums along the Eastern Seaboard and Pacific North-west, as well as in England and Dubai. Ledford's current work is focused on using domestic objects as carriers of narratives about cultural and personal identity. He is currently an instructor for both the School and the Claymobile at The Clay Studio.
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