Everything from Wantoot is created by an artist in the U.S.A.


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Frank Ditri

  • My work consist of clean forms, strong lines, repeating patterns, and striking contrast. I intend for my work to be handled, and I create objects that invite hands upon them. The visual components of my work can often be experienced by their tactility. In the hands of the user, patterns become textures and contrasting colors become contrasting surfaces.

  • I began as a painting student in 2005 at Coe College, Cedar Rapids, Iowa, before transferring to the University of Iowa in 2007. I had chosen to transfer to U of I to be at a bigger school with more students and faculty. At the University I discovered a most valuable resource: graduate students. Working side by side with grads gave me a wealth of knowledge and some solid connections to many other individuals in the community. After a couple of years getting muddy and firing kilns at the University of Iowa, I received a BFA in ceramic arts in 2009. 
    After graduating, I started as a resident at the Ceramics Center in Cedar Rapids, IA. I was part of the first group of residents at the Center since it had opened after the devastating floods of 2008.  It was great to be a part of the beginning of this wonderful place in the (now) beautiful New Bohemia neighborhood.  The Ceramics Center was one of the first signs of life among abandoned warehouses and gutted buildings throughout the neighborhood, offering clay and glass classes and workshops to the public. 
    During my time at the Ceramics Center I met John Jessiman, the director of the Cub Creek Foundation near Appomattox, Virginia. I applied and was accepted as a resident artist at Cub Creek.  I packed my car and headed for (very) rural Virginia.  Cub Creek was a great place to get away from typical daily life and to really dive into my art. It was also a great place for me to observe other artists at work, and to pick up new tricks and techniques for fabrication and firing. Cub Creek also provided an abundance of native high-fire clay that could be obtained from a pit right outside the resident studio. This provided me with a unique opportunity to be involved in literally every aspect of the creation process.
  • I moved back to Iowa in late 2011 and moved into a house and studio just outside of Iowa City. I spent two and a half years creating in that space alongside Chris Burd. In the Summer of 2013 I decided to make ceramics my full time job. My studio is now located in the basement of the Cherry Building. My current studio space is rented to me through the Ceramics Center, which continues to provide a wide variety of classes in clay and warm glass, and has grown immensely since my residency back in 2010.