It is not an understatement to say that much of who I am, most of the good parts anyway, are due to my having earned an education there. It is a craft school, I learned to draw, paint, sculpt, and make glazes there. But more importantly, I learned lessons of humility, compassion, empathy. I learned how to use critical feedback. I learned how to listen. I learned how to use my voice, even when it shakes.
This was much more than an education in craft or art. This was an education in life. As I said, I was not surprised to learn of the school's closure. I had watched it over the last several years decline under the last president. Most of the staff feared her, none of them trusted her, and she kept much hidden from the board who was supposed to control her. In short, she was not there for the good of the school, she was there to preserve a strange false identity, and in doing so, drove my beloved school to ruin.
So much is lost in this closing, and indeed it feels like an echo of the times we live in, where convenience and cheap, throw-away goods rule, consumption is king, and taking the time to slow down and learn is no longer a value this society holds.
I am deeply saddened by the death of an institution that brought so much life to the world.