Instructors

Christian McGinty, BFA, MFA (expected 2022)

Christian McGinty (he/they) is a queer artist and designer originally from Victoria, BC, and now working in Halifax, NS, on unceded Mi’kmaw territory. His artistic practice is heavily embedded in the digital, where he works with video and installation, whereas, his design work is rooted in the natural environment he finds himself in. His time growing up on Vancouver Island instilled a deep appreciation and love for the land base he occupies. He has self-published two books of knitting patterns, Animism, and Bounty, and has recently begun freelance designing as well. McGinty received his BFA in visual arts from the University of Victoria in 2020, and is currently an MFA candidate at NSCAD University.

 

You can find him at:

www.ravelry.com/designers/christian-mcginty

www.instagram.com/hypnosknits

www.christianmcginty.com

 

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Cindy Crowson

Being a retired police officer, I believe I have always liked bracelets. The only difference is now is that I like the pretty, shiny ones instead of the cold hard ones!

I am mostly self-taught. I have been involved in jewellery making for almost 20 years. I first met a classy-looking gal at the gym who was wearing very unique jewellery.

I got up my nerve to speak with her and inquired where she bought her jewellery as it was quite different. Her reply changed my life! She said, “I make it!”

“Well, you have got to show me how!” and I’ve been hooked ever since.

I had my own bead shop in Ontario and have taught a variety of classes but my true passion has been wire wrapping and most of all chainmaille.

 

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David Dallaire

David has 35 years of experience teaching woodworking to all ages, and to people at all skill levels. David primarily enjoys cabinetry, furniture making, and carpentry but has extensive experience in all areas of woodworking. David has taught woodworking at the high school level and has run private adult woodworking courses in New Brunswick since 1987.
David is recently retired and moved to Halifax with his wife in 2020 to be closer to his children and
grandchildren. When not working on a project or spending time with family, David enjoys the outdoors, biking, swimming, and golfing. David has completed undergraduate and graduate degrees from the University of New Brunswick and Drake University.

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Emily May, BFA

Emily May is a Chinese-Canadian Artist from Vancouver, British Columbia. In 2020, May received a BFA from NSCAD University with a major in ceramics. May has exhibited across Canada in BC, Alberta, and Nova Scotia. In 2019, she also was able to present a lecture in Minneapolis, MN.

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Emma Piirtoniemi, BFA

Emma Piirtoniemi is a jewellery artist, writer, editor, and freelance curator originally from Sault Ste. Marie, ON. Emma received her BFA in Jewellery Design and Metalsmithing from NSCAD University, and recently completed a 3-year residency at Harbourfront Centre in Tkaranto/Toronto, ON. Passionate about her community, she serves as the Editor-in-Chief of MetalAid Canadian Art Jewellery Network and is the Studio Technician at NSCAD’s Jewellery Department. She encourages an open-minded and exploratory approach in her classes, and enjoys seeing what students come up with in the studio.

www.emmapiirtoniemi.com
www.metalaidcanada.com

 

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Erin Wells, BFA

Well versed in a myriad of pottery techniques, Erin is a fantastic resource for potters of all skill levels. Whether you are looking to throw larger and more complicated pieces, explore surface decoration, master coil or slab-building, troubleshoot mould making, venture into figure sculpting, or just make some gifts for your friends and family, this instructor is ready to help you dive-in and get your hands muddy.
Originally from Hershey, Pennsylvania, Erin started her studies at Harrisburg Area Community College (HACC) where she fell in love with clay under the tutelage of Robert Troxel. She created an exchange program with the world-renowned Jingdezhen Ceramic Institute and joined the university as their first western exchange student. She transferred to NSCAD University where she completed her BA in Fine Art: Ceramics, winning the first full Walter Ostrom Scholarship, before moving to Montreal to participate in numerous residencies while teaching workshops. She apprenticed under figurative sculptor Joel A Prevost for 2 years before moving back to Halifax where she currently works as the soul proprietor of Deep Harbour Pottery.

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Gina Brigante, BFA (expected 2022)

Gina Brigante is a Ceramic artist born in Winnipeg, Manitoba, and currently rooted in the Maritimes. Brigante has her BFA from NSCAD University. Although she majored in Ceramics, Brigante explored several other mediums during her six years at art school such as printmaking, bookbinding, painting, sculpture, wood and metal works.

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Jackie Toner

Jackie Toner (she/her) otherwise known as Woods(wo)man Woodworking self-identifies as a queer, cisgender female living with a disability and currently resides in Pesikitik/Windsor. Jackie doesn’t hail from a craft background but instead she has earned a BSc & MSc in Kinesiology and is currently working towards her PhD in Health. Throughout her journey in Academia, she found working with her hands incredibly therapeutic and found woodworking as her creative outlet. As someone who is predominantly self-taught, Jackie is always eager to share her passion for woodworking through teaching and currently volunteers as the Woodshop Coordinator at Makers Studio & Art Market in Pesikitik/Windsor, as well as an instructor with  Centre for Craft in k’jipuktuk / Halifax.

You can find her on Instagram at @woodswoman_woodworking .

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Jessie Fraser, BFA, MFA

Living in K’jipuktuk/Halifax Jessie Fraser is a craft oriented visual artist working predominantly in the medium of fibre. Her practice considers how imagery, poetry and hand-woven cloth may be combined, to investigate the affective potential of woven cloth and text in site-sensitive installations. Fraser completed an MFA in 2019 at Alberta University of the Arts in Craft Media. She has participated in multiple residencies and exhibited work in a number of venues throughout Calgary, including group shows at VivianeArt and Stride Gallery. Image, text and textiles, along with photographic and weaving processes are used as sites of intuitive and emotional investigation. Using time as both a process and a material, Jessie’s practice is the process of weaving. She weaves not only with thread but also historic narratives and atmospheric feeling.

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Jodi Beazley, BFA, BA Art Ed, MEd

Born, raised, and educated in Halifax, N.S., Jodi earned BA and Art Education Degrees at NSCAD and later returned to work on her Masters in Art Education.

Since 1990, Jodi has taught Art and Pottery in public schools and community centres. While living in B.C. for the last 18 years, she ran a private pottery school and sold her pieces in galleries throughout the province.

Her love of cooking and entertaining has evolved in her large functional tableware which welcomes ”gatherings” at her table. The surface relief carving and glazing reflects the ebb and flow of the East Coast Ocean.

Jodi feels that teaching and making inform one another. Jodi’s relationships and interactions with her students revives her enthusiasm for her own work, which is then shared back to the students.

Jodi recently returned home to Nova Scotia and is excited to re-establish her studio.

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Ken Flett

I am a Nova Scotia based visual artist and l have generally worked with black and white photographs incorporating them with various objects.  

In the last few years l have mainly concentrated on mixed media without the black and white photos using stitching, embroidery, mosaic, and other hand done work that requires time and patience.

I work with themes of love and memory, hope and loss.  I am interested in making the invisible visible, not just as art, but by giving importance to stories that would otherwise be lost and forgotten. 

I also have worked with cloth dolls for many years, incorporating them into stop motion and other photographic work.  I have taught many workshops and summer schools on pinhole cameras, stop motion, doll making, mixed media, and assemblage. I enjoy teaching. 

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Ken Flett can best be described as a bricoleur. A “bricoleur” is a kind of handyman who enjoys adroitly drawing upon all sorts of everyday things – whatever is at hand – to attend to those things that make the good life.

www.kenflett.com

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Nancy Boyne

Nancy has been weaving for 49 years. She was taught by a local Master Weaver, Mrs Dorothy Hill, who had a studio and shop in Halifax and also studied in Sweden.

She is primarily a functional weaver who loves working with natural fibres, colour, and texture.

She has taken many workshops in different techniques from very respected and experienced weavers from Europe, Canada and the US. She has also taught workshops and given private lessons in her home-based studio which houses 6 looms. She has been a consultant for several movies, renting her home and weaving and teaching actors to weave. Her studio was moved to Chester and to Halifax twice to be used in films several years ago.

Working with Design Business Nova Scotia and NSCAD U, she was on a team that took part in a project called the “Living Spaces Project”. The goal was to create a Gallery Suite at the Radisson Hotel which would provide a “comfortable space” for business and leisure guests in an “upscale” setting while also providing a showcase for original, innovative products designed by N.S. designers. It was a very successful concept being tried in Europe.

She has taught at Craft NS for 15 years and has sold her work throughout North America, Britain, and in many shops and juried markets in NS.

She believes that her work should be used and enjoyed.

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Renée Brazeau

Renée Brazeau is an artist and educator whose art practice currently focuses on embroidery, acrylic painting and illustration. She considers her practice to be place-based, since she uses her experiences of specific places to inform what she creates. Renée holds a Bachelor of Fine Arts (Honours) and a Bachelor of Education from Queen’s University in Kington, Ontario. Renée is in the process of completing her final year of the Master of Arts in Art Education program at NSCAD University where she is researching the process of becoming a professional artist in Kjipuktuk/Halifax.
reneebrazeau.com

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Rhonda Miller, BA, MLIS

Rhonda Miller is a bookbinder with nearly twenty years experience and she has an undying fascination with book structure and historical bookbinding techniques. As a book artist, she does custom bookbinding, book repair and restoration, artists books, and paper marbling. Her work has been included in book art exhibits in various locations and in 2018 she won the Heritage Washi Award for her book in the CBBAG Art of the Book Exhibition. She has contributed to a number of bookbinding publications and has been interviewed for the Bookbinding Now podcast series.

While earning her Masters of Library and Information Studies, she took bookbinding courses through the Dawson Printshop at Dalhousie University. Later, she continued to develop her skills through a variety of workshops and intensive learning events such as the Paper and Book Intensive. Rhonda is owner and operator of MyHandboundBooks and Scotia Bookbinding and she teaches bookbinding classes at Craft Nova Scotia and at The Morgan Conservatory in Cleveland, Ohio. MyHandboundBooks.com

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Robin Wolfe, BFA, MA Women and Gender Studies (2022 expected)

Robin has lived in Kjipuktuk (Halifax) since they were 15, and was raised in Kakagwek (Hanstport). They are a white, trans masculine, non-binary, bisexual artist. He is neurodivergent and a current graduate student at Saint Mary’s University studying Women and Gender Studies. They did their undergrad at NSCAD University, where he was able to study bookbinding at the Dawson Printshop. Much of Robin’s work revolves around teaching and sharing craft techniques in queer and accessible spaces. Their main medium is bookbinding, but they also paint, write and draw. Robin loves teaching, crafting, and spending time with his high-energy dog, Skylar.

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Violet Rosengarten

Violet Rosengarten began her artistic career as a textile artist, apprenticing with the indigenous people in Mexico and Guatemala. Her scarves and shawls sold at high-end boutiques on Madison Avenue and at Bonwit Teller Department Store in New York.

Her tapestries explored colour, texture and abstraction. Upon graduating with a BFA in 1989 from Concordia University in Montreal, she became a painter. After completing her B Ed at McGill as an art specialist, Violet taught art for twenty years in the public school system, first in Toronto and then in Dartmouth, N.S.

Violet paints mixed media abstract paintings and landscapes. She has exhibited in solo and group shows in Quebec, Ontario and now in Nova Scotia. She teaches Mixed Media Painting at the Centre For Craft NS and in the VANS PAINTS program.

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Wenjing Yan, BFA

Wenjing Yan graduated in 2020 from Nova Scotia College of Arts and Design (NSCAD) University in Halifax with a BFA major in Jewellery Design and Metalsmithing. During her studies, she did an exchange in Germany at Pforzheim Hochschule. She also has BFA degree in Animation Design in China.

She has participated in many exhibitions. Among those exhibitions are the Solo “WE”Exhibition; Alchemy5 of 13th Enamelling Exhibition; the 19th International Silver Triennial Exhibition; New Taipei City International Metal Craft Exhibition; Annual SNAG Student Slide Exhibition; and the VMAA Vancouver Metal Arts Association [Play]ground Exhibition.

She loves to experiment with new materials and methods to create and develop her jewellery designs.

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