Samantha Bachman, who graduated in May, receiving dual degrees in BFA and Art Education, was recently awarded the Windgate Fellowship. Each year the Center for Craft, Creativity, and Design (CCCD), located in Asheville, NC, awards ten graduating seniors working in craft medium or process a $15,000 Windgate Fellowship to fund their continued artistic exploration. This year, 112 students from universities across the country were nominated for the award. In her press release, Stephanie Moore, executive director of CCCD, said "The Windgate Fellowship program identifies the best emerging craft artists in the field through the nation's premier university programs. This is one of the largest awards offered to undergraduate seniors. We are reaching artists at a critical time when both the financial award and subsequent recognition provide the greatest impact.”
Shannon Goff, SoVA assistant professor and Bachman’s faculty mentor, had this to say about her student:
“Samantha's work is in the top 9 percent of all of those who applied for this very competitive and prestigious award. It is a most incredible honor. The trajectory of Samantha’s work from smaller exploratory, playful forms to her more robust and layered objects has been remarkable to observe. Her efforts have allowed many of us to glimpse her boundless potential. At this moment in the career of a young artist, a significant award, which the Windgate Fellowship represents, has the tremendous potential to considerably embolden and amplify the work that is to come. We’ve already witnessed incredible growth in Samantha’s endeavor, which has come through her own industrious effort. It excites me to think of her future work and the possibilities that may unfold in her career as a result of this opportunity."
Through the Windgate Fellowship, Bachman will visit the museums of several European porcelain manufacturers, including Lladró, Meissen, and Herend, to study the history and current production of figurines. She will attend a mold-making, slip-casting, and china-painting workshop with Ilona Romule at the International Ceramics Studio in Kecskemét, Hungary. Bachman will also attend a symposium at the International Ceramics Studio titled New Energy, Transforming Tradition. Finally, she will outfit a studio to continue her exploration of concepts and techniques that emerge through her research in Europe.