John Baymore is originally from Lake Hopatcong in northern New Jersey, with a family
history tracing back to the Mercer and Cook potteries of the Trenton area in the
mid to late 1800's. He studied in the ceramics program at the University of Massachusetts
at Amherst, and has been making pottery professionally since then. Although selling
his pots since his student days, John's first real working studio, Otis Earthworks,
was located in Otis, Massachusetts in the early 70's. John has been crafting work
at River Bend Pottery in Wilton, New Hampshire since the fall of 1977. He is currently
the Immediate Past President of the Potters Council of the American Ceramic Society.
While in college, John had the opportunity to study with faculty members Paul Berube,
Brenda Minisci, Sue Parks and Jim Wozniak in the program then chaired by Lyle Perkins.
His education has also included classes at Massachusetts College of Art and Rivier
College, and workshops led by well known artists such as Paul Soldner, John Gill,
Bob Arenson, Jun Kaneko, Wayne Higby, Bill Daley, Warren MacKenzie, Ron Nagle, Fred
Olsen, Norm Schulman, Randy Johnston, Don Reitz, and Hamada Tomoo. He has also attended
numerous N.C.E.C.A. and "Supermud" professional conferences.
John began woodfiring in 1969, with the first kiln he ever built, and has been "hooked"
on wood as a fuel ever since then. In 1976, John even built a wood fired 3 chamber
climbing kiln right in downtown Boston, at Massachusetts College of Art. John's
noborigama was listed in the first survey of American wood kilns performed by Studio
Potter Magazine in 1982. He was an invited participant at the First Woodfiring Aesthetics
Symposium held at the Japan Society in New York City in 1983, and was recently included
in Gerry Williams' slide presentation on "Japanese Influences on American Ceramics"
sponsored by the American Craft Museum. John was a featured artist in the "New Hampshire
Wood Fire Potters Invitational" in 1998.
In 1996, John was awarded the prestigious Judge's Special Prize in the Mashiko, Japan
Ceramics Competition, and was invited to travel to Mashiko, Japan to receive the
award. Over 15,000 people attended the month-long exhibition, including the Emperor
of Japan. In the summer of 2002 John was an invited presenter at the Aomori International
Wood Fire Festival in Goshogawara-shi, Japan. He joined 80 other invited artists
from 17 countries and spent 11 days producing work, giving a slide lecture, exhibiting,
and interacting with his international peers. During the event approx. 50,000 people
came to watch the participants produce their work, see the artists exhibition, and
the event was covered by both local and national Japanese television.
In 2003, John was again invited, along with Fred Olsen and Steve Branfman, to be
the three artists to represent the USA at the next Japanese Wood Fire Festival, however
the event was canceled due to the threat of SARS. In the summer of 2004, John was
again invited as one of three artists to represent the USA at the Kanayama World
Woodfire Artist-in-Residence program. Also in the summer of 2004, he was invited
to be a guest lecturer at the Tokyo National University of Fine Art and Music (Geidai).
John has taught at Massachusetts College of Art, Boston University's Program in Artisanry,
and the Danforth Museum School as well as conducting numerous workshop sessions at
schools and craft centers. In the 70's, he was the full time ceramics technician
at Massachusetts College of Art for four years. He is currently adjunct Professor
of Ceramics at New Hampshire Institute of Art in Manchester, NH, where he teaches
general studio courses, Japanese ceramic art history, and the technical ceramic
materials and kiln courses. John was the chairperson of the NHIA Health and Safety
Committee, served as a member of the school's NASAD Accreditation Committee, and
worked on the Curriculum Committee.