WTF Mugs

If you are one of the many people visiting this website in search of a WTF mug I thank you for stopping by. Mugs are being reengineered to help ensure that there is more inventory, that the integrity of the mugs is strengthened, and that the quality remains high. Please check back later this winter/early spring for updates and a new online shop.

Poetry is Currency | Paulus Berensohn | ep.#61


At 80, Paulus Berensohn possesses more energy and gravity than most of us in our prime. He has been an important part of the Penland community for 40 years and he has been, and is, a dancer, poet, artist, and sage. We talked on his porch in Penland back in August. I’m lucky to have had the opportunity to do so. There’s not a whole lot that I can say here that he hasn’t said better. Enjoy this one, folks. It’s a good one.

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Gail Kendall

Lineage, Legacy, and Influence | Gail Kendall| ep.#60

Gail Kendall is an Emeritus Professor of Art at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln. From 1987 until 2011 Gail built (along with Pete Pinnell and Eddie Dominguez) one of the strongest ceramic programs in the country. Her tenacious faith in the power of education, sharing ideas, and the necessity of craft has inspired and influenced hundreds of students throughout the years. Gail is one of my favorite people and I am very happy to have this conversation for all of you. Enjoy!

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Step One: Commit Grand Theft Auto, Step Two: Work for Dior | Jeffrey Hatfield | ep.#59

Jeffrey Hatfield is one of three principal operators of Guild. Essentially, he works with display, but in a much deeper and inclusive way. His job is to set the stage for action and interaction. Think about how that adidas pop-up showroom looks, or the Roberto Cavalli windows are arranged, or perhaps the Wired Store. His company has far reaching ambition and in our conversation we talk about the beginning of Guild, Jeffrey’s kitchen training, management style, and his foray into grand theft auto. Enjoy!

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More (design), More (drawing), More (consumption)!!! | Kate Bingaman-Burt | ep.#58

09272008212348501151Kate Bingaman-Burt is an industry onto herself. A graduate of the Univeristy of Nebraska-Lincoln, KBB now teaches graphic design at Portland State University, has published three books, and has clients that include Chipotle, Hallmark, IDEO, and the Girl Scouts of America. She’s been closely involved in Handmade Nation, teaches workshops, and organizes events (Design Week Portland). We talk about learning and teaching graphic design, what cool is, and how to work with seemingly soulless corporate goliaths (my words, not hers). Enjoy!

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Writing the Rules (West Coast Funk) | Richard Shaw | ep.#57

rickbioIn the final interview from my time down in the Bay Area back in June I bring to you a conversation with the eminent Richard Shaw. A pioneer of the West Coast/Funk movement, Richard recently retired from teaching at UC Berkeley. We talk about how he developed his trompe-l’oeil work, working as a young man with future ceramic greats, and his recent time spent in Korea.

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More Information about Richard


Jumping Out of a Burning Building and Living with the Fallout | Christa Assad | ep.#56



Christa Assad is one of the most visible American ceramic artists working today. She’s been working and living in Berkeley, CA for the past several years as a studio potter, and in between has lead countless workshops, been featured in a Carhartt apparel advertisement, and crowned the 2012 Ceramic Artist of the Year by Ceramics Monthly. In early 2014 she broke her back after jumping out of window to escape a house fire. We talk about getting derailed, starting back up, and how thinking changes after major life events.

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Flatness, Roundness, Business, Pots | Forrest Lesch-Middelton | ep.#55

Forrest Lesch-Middelton is a potter and tile maker who lives and works in Northern California. I knew Forrest way back as an undergraduate student at Alfred University. He was one of the big seniors. He’s continued on, making a clear mark as both a potter and businessman. We talk about his foray into tile, nerdy clay stuff like reduction cooling, and what a “real job” actually means.

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