This October, the art faculty named Tristan Gardner ’24 and Adison Kendall ’24, both ceramics intensive students, and Nils Tellander ’24, a drawing and painting intensive student, Artists of the Month. 

Tristan Gardner ’24 was honored for his extensive ceramics portfolio. His pieces on display were different types of dishware and vases he had created in the past two years as an intensive student. 

Working his way up to the honors level intensive class, Gardner has been in the ceramics program since 9th-grade. 

“His craftsmanship, his attention to detail, and his ability to pick out glazes that are appropriate for the pieces that he creates has definitely improved,” said Ceramics Intensive teacher Ms. Amie Larson. 

Gardner gifted the above vase and others to his former teachers, Ms. Meghan Church and Mr. Alan Brazier. Photo Courtesy of Amie Larson. 

Gardner often turns to social media as inspiration for his work and attempts to replicate the aspects of the different pieces in his artwork. 

“I follow a lot of ceramics artists on Instagram, and they make these very elegant large forms. I just tried to mimic those,” said Gardner. 

However, inspiration is only part of the process. 

“[Tristan] is very self-driven. He does a lot of work that he researches himself, and he is not happy when his work doesn’t meet the standards that he sets for himself. So he will keep producing until he makes pieces that he’s proud of,” said Larson.

Gardner hopes to continue pursuing ceramics in the future, whether as a college activity or a long-term hobby.

“I would love to do ceramics in college, but it’s not an expectation of mine,” said Gardner. “But I hope it could be a lifetime hobby.”

Adison Kendall ’24 has a diverse range of interests, being both a metals and Ceramics Intensive student, football player, and culinary artist. Kendall has been taking ceramics for three years and is in his first year of Ceramics Intensive.

Adison Kendall was inspired by his cooking experience when creating his pieces displayed for 3D Artist of the Month. Photo courtesy of Amie Larson.

Ranging from his freshman year to his senior year, each of his pieces displays a technique he learned in the high school’s ceramics program.

“His attention to detail and ability to control the clay has improved dramatically since sophomore year,” said Ceramics Intensive instructor Ms. Amie Larson.

Kendall’s background in cooking has a large influence on the pieces, often bowls and cookware,

he creates.

“I think one of his big inspirations is trying to find a way to create things with his hands that can also serve as serving ware for the foods that he produces,” said Larson.

Kendall focuses much of his time on coming up with ideas for his projects and considering different details to add to his pieces.

“The process of creating is where a lot of time is spent. There is a lot of learning that comes from the creating process,” said Kendall.

Kendall would like to carry the skills he’s learned through his different art classes into the future, and he would like to encourage others to take art classes because of the trials and errors that lead to growth and creativity. For instance, during some classes, failed ideas forced Kendall to take a couple of steps back, reassess the situation, and try again. 

“This skill can be applied in all sorts of settings, so whether I am able to have a metals or ceramic personal studio in my future, I will always be able to carry the lessons learned throughout the rest of my life,” Kendall said. 

Nils Tellander ’24 has created a comprehensive collection of pieces from his years in drawing and painting intensive, some of which are displayed for 2D Artist of the Month. 

Through the piece entitled “Honu”, Tellander illustrates how water impacts the refraction of light. Photo courtesy of Nils Tellander.

The works displayed are part of a series of natural abstractions. Many of Tellander’s pieces are influenced by nature and the various places he has visited.

“I just feel inspired by nature, and I like creating the natural world through a somewhat unrealistic lens,” said Tellander. “I am fortunate to have seen some extraordinary landscapes and creatures, so I also use my art to hold a memory.”

Tellander curated his work from his collection over the past few years, thinking about ways to fill up the display as best as possible. Some of the pieces came from his series of waterfall paintings, which he created in 11th-grade Intensive Drawing and Painting.

Tellander realistically depicts the famous waterfall Skofagoss in Iceland and portrays a more abstract version of Yosemite Falls in California, below. Photo courtesy of Nils Tellander.

Tellander expressed his gratitude for being named 2D Artist of the Month after working towards this goal since beginning Drawing and Painting Intensive classes.  

“I was appreciative to be acknowledged as artist of the month because it is satisfying to see most of my pieces hanging in one place,” said Tellander. 

Tellander has years of experience, both from taking Drawing and Painting Intensive since junior year and previous classes.  

“Nils is an interesting mix,” said Drawing and Painting Intensive teacher Mr. Brian Reddy. “He’s very capable and very self-motivated, and he always has an idea in his head of what he wants to create. He already knows where he wants to go.”

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