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August 16, 2013

With the help of a $49,713 Minnesota State Arts Board grant and generous donations from Northern Clay Center, Continental Clay and their own Foundation, Anoka-Ramsey Community College has captured renowned potter Warren MacKenzie at work in his studio in a documentary titled, “Warren MacKenzie: A Potter's Hands.”

The documentary, premiering Sept. 5, presents a visual window into the life work of this remarkable potter who at 89, continues to remain active in his studio. This documentary follows the potter through his complete firing cycle, and captures Warren sharing his own stories.

“It has been a wonderful experience documenting Warren in his studio,” said Mark Lambert, college Art Faculty and documentary director. “Witnessing his hands move life into the clay is captivating, and Warren is such a warm and giving individual.  The film crew also worked so well together, each person filling an important role and doing a remarkable job.”

The documentary will premiere at Anoka-Ramsey Community College:

Thursday, Sept. 5, 2013
7 p.m.
Coon Rapids Campus Performing Art Center (11200 Mississippi Blvd. NW, Coon Rapids, MN)
Contact Mark.Lambert@anokaramsey.edu 763-433-1307

Public viewings of the documentary will also be shown:

Friday Sept. 20, 2013
7 to 9 p.m.
Zeitgeist Theater (222 E. Superior St, Duluth, MN)
Contact TonyaBorgeson@hotmail.com or 218-310-8903 for ticket reservations or more information.

Thursday Oct. 10, 2013
6 to 8 p.m.
University of Minnesota (405 21st Avenue S, Minneapolis, MN)
Regis Center for Art, Influx Room
Contact ncc@northernclaycenter.org or 612-339-8007 for ticket reservations or more information.

Wednesday Oct 16, 2013
7 p.m.
Minnesota State University, Mankato Armstrong Hall 102

Thursday Oct. 24, 2013
7 p.m.Minnesota State University Moorhead

More About Mackenzie
Warren MacKenzie was born in 1924 in Kansas City, MO, and spent his formative years in Wilmette, IL, a Chicago suburb. After serving in the Army during World War II, he returned from Japan and attended The Art Institute of Chicago.  He apprenticed with English potter Bernard Leach from 1949-1952. In 1953, he and his wife purchased a farm near Stillwater, MN, and constructed a studio where he continues to work today.

Over his 60+ year career, Warren MacKenzie has made vast contributions to our society’s cultural heritage. MacKenzie’s simple, wheel-thrown functional pottery, heavily influenced by Korean folk pottery, is internationally recognized. According to the Smithsonian Institution, MacKenzie is credited with bringing to Minnesota the Japanese “Mingei” style of pottery—“hand-crafted art for ordinary people.” He joined the University of Minnesota–Twin Cities art faculty in 1952 and remains a professor emeritus today.

MacKenzie has always represented his work as everyday pottery for everyday people at an affordable price, reinforcing the functionality of his pieces; yet, his work continues to be highly valued and prized for its simple elegance and artistic value.

This documentary showcases the artistic process of this remarkable individual, provides a view into the creation of the art form, and imparts to Minnesotans the artistic value of pottery, as well as its historic and cultural significance to society as a whole.

This documentary was funded by Minnesota State Arts Board- Folk and Traditional Arts grant and made possible by the voters of Minnesota through a grant from the Minnesota State Arts Board, thanks to a legislative appropriation from the arts and cultural heritage fund.

Warren Mackenzie DocumentaryA documentary titled, “Warren MacKenzie: A Potter's Hands” will premiere at Anoka-Ramsey Community College in Coon Rapids, MN Sept. 5, and then travel to Duluth, Mankato, Winona and Moorhead.