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Happy Sails

Display of Nicole Mclaughlin's pottery
Display of Nicole Mclaughlin's pottery
Display of Nicole Mclaughlin's pottery
Nicole Mclaughlin

Nicole McLaughlin ’16 credits Tabor Academy for sparking her love of ceramics and art. She returned to the School by the Sea as a Teaching Fellow after completing her B.F.A. in ceramics at the Kansas City Art Institute in 2020.

While at the Kansas City Art Institute, McLaughlin served as a teaching assistant in the Ceramics Department. In the spring, her artwork was awarded first place in a national exhibition of undergraduate ceramic art hosted by the National Council on Education for the Ceramic Arts, NCECA, and was named as a 2020 Art Axis Fellow. The Fellowship aims to increase diversity, equity, and access in the ceramic arts, with the explicit goal of adding unique perspectives across the field.

"Returning to Tabor as the Teaching Fellow has been a very special experience for me, and I hope for the students as well. The Ceramics Studio has and always will hold a special place in my heart,” says McLaughlin. "I hope that my presence has shown students what is possible beyond the Tabor studio.”

Tabor’s Ceramics Fellowship position was created in spring 2019, when Bob Mogilnicki ’76, teacher of Ceramics for twenty-nine years, retired from teaching at Tabor. Mogilnicki’s departure left Visual Arts Teacher Kevin Arnfield brainstorming about how the change could create an opportunity for the ceramics program to try something new- hiring a Teaching Fellow.

“Ms. McLaughlin has not only been a fantastic teacher, dorm parent, mentor, and a positive force on campus during her two-year tenure as the Teaching Fellow in Ceramics,” says colleague Kevin Arnfield, “She has also been a very productive artist in ceramics and fiber work.”

McLaughlin’s recent installation work incorporates ceramics, fiber, Mexican folk patterns, and embroidery to engage the viewer in a dialogue about material, tradition, handcraft, aesthetics, family culture, food, and lineage. Her fellowship was completed with the end of the 2021-22 academic year. Starting in September, she will be a resident artist at Mudflat Studios in Somerville. McLaughlin will also be teaching at Harvard’s Office for the Arts as a Ceramics Instructor come Fall.

“What I learned as a student has stayed with me; it continues to foster an appreciation for what is tangible in the moments when we begin to create and discover," reflects McLaughlin. "I couldn’t have imagined a better place to continue growth as an artist and educator."

You can visit Ceramics by Nicole McLaughlin online to view more of her work.

And stay tuned for more information on Tabor’s incoming Ceramics Teaching Fellow.