Alumni Artists Make “Potters to Watch in 2016” List

Wednesday, January 13, 2016

Two UNCW graduates have been named to the “15 Potters to Watch in 2016” list compiled by CFile, a daily publication for contemporary ceramic art and design.

Noah Reidel and Jessica Phillips are among the 15 artists spotlighted by the publication for their work in contemporary pottery.

Reidel, who graduated from UNCW in 2002, creates functional ceramics with a modern, minimalist flair.

The publication noted that he “approaches his ceramic design without preconceptions of the rules of the material. Expected traits of functional-ware are missing from his practice, the glossy surfaces, solid fluid colors, and even typical production methods. The result of his objective approach to ceramic process is a unique and diverse aesthetic experience rarely achieved in functional pottery.”

Phillips is a 2006 graduate of UNCW. She is a former winner of the Boseman Scholarship and was selected for the solo student show in 2006. Several of her pieces remain on display in the university's collection in the Fisher University Union. As a reflection of her own experience in the military, she explores the juxtaposition of U.S. service women in combat with the domestic and decorative nature of heirloom tableware. She was part of nine national and international exhibitions during 2015. CFile noted, “The combination of brilliant illustration skills, conceptual use of pottery and modern themes have found Jessica Putnam Phillips huge art world success in 2015.”

UNCW professor of studio art Aaron Wilcox taught both Riedel and Phillips as undergraduates. “It’s quite interesting that two of the 15 artists included are graduates of UNCW,” he said. “They are both critical artists who see their work in the larger context of ceramics, art and the human condition.”

More information and visuals of both Reidel’s and Phillips’ work can be found at:

-- Caroline Cropp