Linda Sikora in conversation with Mark Shapiro

Wednesday May 24, 12pm EST

Virtual lunch hour with exhibiting artist Linda Sikora, as she sits down with local potter Mark Shapiro and curator Leslie Ferrin, to discuss her exhibition DARKENING GROUND.


on view at Ferrin Contemporary
April 22 – June 11, 2023

Linda Sikora Darkening Ground installation view at Ferrin Contemporary gallery, featuring teapots, jars, basins, cups, on a table with chairs and shelving


Linda Sikora’s studio is anchored in the genre of functional ceramics. Sikora is interested in the philosophical and the agency of things. Complex, colorfully decorated, and often conceptualized in prototype groups or series, the work draws from the traditions of European 18 & 19th century industrial production porcelain and common crockery infused with a freedom and lightness that is innovative and contemporary. Her work explores the dual nature of ceramics—as objects of beauty and as objects of use—questioning the blurred line between visual art and functional subjects in cultured spaces.

Sikora is the recipient of a United States Artists Fellowship, an award for excellence in teaching and has been recognized for her mentorship as an educator.  Her work was acquired by the Smithsonian in 2022 and featured at the Renwick in their 50th-anniversary exhibition “This Present Moment: Crafting a Better World”. She is a renowned ceramics professor at Alfred University where she maintains an active studio practice and lives with her husband Matthew Metz and daughter.


Mark Shapiro makes wood-fired pots in Western Massachusetts. A 2018 Smithsonian Artist Resident Fellow, Mark received a 2020 Center for Craft Research Grant to continue his study of Thomas W. Commeraw, which led to his co-curating “Crafting Freedom: The Life and Legacy of Free Black Potter, Thomas W. Commeraw,” currently on view at the New-York Historical Society. His book on Karen Karnes, A Chosen Path, was published in 2010. He credits Karnes, Michael Simon, and his collaborators, Sam Taylor and Michael Kline, as well as early American stoneware, as his main influences. HIs pots are included in numerous public collections.

More on the exhibition Crafting Freedom: The Life and Legacy of Free Black Potter Thomas W. Commeraw, co-curated by Mark Shapiro.

July 29th – 30th, 2023
10am-5pm both days

Find Linda Sikora and Mark Shapiro this summer at the Hilltown Six Pottery Tour, a weekend of tours and demonstrations coordinated by a group of nationally recognized potters based in the Hilltowns of Western Massachusetts.

Lunch with Linda Sikora

Saturday, July 29
Project Art, Cummington, MA

1 comment

[…] Ferrin Contemporary is hosting a virtual lunch hour with exhibiting artist Linda Sikora (ceramic artist and Alfred University faculty member) as she sits down with local potter Mark […]