Christian has been making and teaching ceramics for more than 15 years. He has been in classrooms and studios with students from preschoolers to College Undergrads. He has always believed that Art making and appreciating best happens in community and reminds us of our shared humanity. Christian has been a part of the Mayflower community ever since his mom, Dana, started working with the youth choirs 35ish years ago. He has sung in choirs, been a member of youth group, been on many work trips, acted as a confirmation facilitator and mentor and a MECC board member. Most importantly, he has deeply valued the many formative and supportive relationships with the amazing Mayflower community.
Joan G. Cox
If you’ve ever been to Plymouth Church, there are two stained glass windows designed by Joan Cox. Her work has been shown in galleries in Minnesota, Wisconsin, Colorado, New Mexico, France, Ireland and Italy. Joan is married to a UCC minister, Marcus Cox, who was at Olivet UCC in St. Paul for 38 years, and she is the sister-in-law of Rev. Sarah Campbell and sister of Mark Gustafson. If you fall in love with a painting and want to see if it is available for purchase, contact her directly at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Leon Erstad has attended Mayflower for about four years. He is on Church Council. He enjoys playing with rocks. Cutting and polishing agates and jasper is the most fun. But then wanted some way to display them, other than just as polished rocks, so he started using stone in two dimensional art works. Stained glass, tile and wood complement the stone nicely. Sometimes he simply sets off the stone, sometimes he makes representational art, and sometimes he creates abstract pieces.
Kris Haugen has been a member of Mayflower for more than a decade with her partner, Dede Carr, and son Eli. She flexed her creative muscle by starting to throw pots at 30, which led to fusing glass, where she could use the same kiln and explore color and sunlight through glass. She took to photography as a “packable hobby” when traveling. Kris enjoys exploring organic and natural forms, colors and shapes and loves to create. She revels in beauty that nature provides and strives for simplicity and admiring God’s creation.
Robin Keck is a wife/mother/picture framer/alto/Mayflower member and a stone carver. While her home and business are in Golden Valley, a good chunk of her heart resides at Ghost Ranch, in Abiqui, NM. Robin learned and internalized the ancient art of stone carving by hand more than 25 years ago at the ranch, and now carves, instructs and assists in programming there. She also leads “How to Begin” stone carving sessions here. Most of her carving is spent with rasps and sandpaper on smaller figures using alabaster, wonderstone and soapstone. She owns mallets, chisels and power tools but finds they interfere with the zen of stone carving. Many of her pieces are for sale, and she often accepts commissions, because “Everybody needs a rock.”
James is a new member of Mayflower Church. His daughter created the care cards the church has been sending out in the pandemic.
About eight years ago, Linda Nelson decided that she would like to learn Chinese Sumi painting. Primarily ink on rice paper, but also some color is included. She was fortunate to find a teacher with whom she could study off and on — generally when he was in town for workshops — he lives in Seattle. This past year however, he introduced Linda (and a mutual friend who shares this interest) to a local Sumi artist. They have been studying with him since then and are truly loving this opportunity.
Andy earned his BFA from Pratt Institute and his MFA from the Rhode Island School of Design. He has participated in numerous artist residencies including The Vermont Studio Center, The MacDowell Colony, Denniston Hill, and was a two-year Fellow at The Fine Arts Work Center in Provincetown, MA. Andy has taught at RISD, Studio in a School in New York City, and the Grand Marais Art Colony. He has shown his work both nationally and internationally and is currently represented by Studio d’Arte Raffaelli in Trento, ITALY. See more of Andy’s work on Instagram: Instagram.com/iamandyness
I have always struggled to find my artistic side. I always joked that my art skills stopped developing in about third grade. Never one to give up easily, I decided to try using alcohol inks during the pandemic as a creative outlet when staying at home. I have discovered a medium I actually have some skill and and that I truly enjoy as each creation is a surprise. I have also used art as a means of working through grief after the death of our daughter, Ella. This is my opportunity to share my work with you. I hope you find pieces that speak to you. More work can be found at artpal.com/knormanmajor.
After taking one metal sculpture class at Minneapolis College, Sherrie Stockton was hooked! Her motto is Re-use and Amuse! She creates whimsical characters out of scrap metal, old tools, and equipment parts using the oxyacetylene method of welding at the Chicago Avenue Fire Arts Center in Minneapolis. That means she gets to play with fire! She finds materials at scrap dealers, estate sales, friends’ castoffs, and truly found objects. My whimsical sculptures are friendly to the environment, unique, and generate smiles. Check out www.whimsywelding.com or follow Whimsy Welding on Facebook.
Peggy (Margaret Carroll) Thompson
Peggy has been creating art for most of her life. A Mayflower member, Peggy is a retired chaplain, artist, teacher, and spiritual director. Peggy shared her artwork, paired with writings with the Benedictine Center and Mayflower’s Women’s Spirituality Group. In a time of crisis, the arts are an even more important companion. Not only do they allow us to move to a deeper place, they help us express feelings that words often cannot convey. Each day Peggy pairs words and paintings as part of her morning prayer time. Her work, another artistic expression, offers recipients a moment of grace, reflection, hope and an opportunity for contemplation. Her work goes out to many people, institutions and organizations locally and throughout the globe. Peggy can be reached at email@example.com.
I’m pleased to share my art, and I’m equally surprised and humbled. Here’s why: I don’t really know what I’m doing! Though I’ve always loved art and used it creatively throughout my career as a kindergarten teacher of 33 years, alcohol inks are new to me. A few years ago, I began to simply play with this new medium. Little did I know just how important this art would become to me. Our son, Kevin, died unexpectedly of a heroin and fentanyl overdose on February 25, 2019, bringing inexplicable grief. Since that terrible day, God has been present in surprising ways, helping me walk with grief and begin to heal. One of these ways of healing is through painting with alcohol inks. The abstract qualities of alcohol inks are liberating and give me the courage to simply explore, experiment, play and enjoy this art form. Many times, I have had no idea what I’m going to paint – the inks show me the way! It is a lesson in letting go. My art is mostly nature scenes/forms but can be interpreted in the viewers own way. In fact, each piece can be rotated in any direction and new images come to life. Art has given me hope.