Ash Street Project

Ash Street Project, the vision of artists Thomas Orr and Joanna Bloom, encompasses art studios, visiting artists, gallery space, community programs and a clay-based emerging artist mentorship program.  Our site also hosts an on-line gallery shop.

Current Mentees

Current Mentees   |   Past Mentees  

2018 - 2019


Ian grew up in Minnesota. He moved to Lake Tahoe to attend Sierra Nevada College. At the time, his main focus was competing in snowboarding. He would throw mugs at night in order to participate in Clay Club events.  Attending the annual NCECA conference was one of the rewards of being a Clay Club member. Those conferences inspired him to explore ceramics more. He was also exploring glaze textures and learning about the chemistry of glazes. He started using plastics and foam as a way to reference toxins in the food system. Ian graduated with a BFA and a minor in Business Management in 2016. Ian spent some time in Costa Rica helping teach art class at Futuro Verde. Also, he was a resident artist for 3 months at Shigaraki Ceramic Cultural Park in Japan. There he was able to continue learning about glaze chemistry, and also observe another culture’s food system. 

Ian wants to continue learning about glaze chemistry and creating biomorphic forms inspired by packaging. 



Growing up first in Paris and then New York City, Janet Williamson has lived in Portland for more than 20 years raising her own family and exploring the NW.  After graduating from Wesleyan University (CT) with a degree in art history, Janet later received Masters degrees in Education and in Historic Preservation which led to work in museums, schools and non-profit organizations.  Always a maker, Janet returned to art school a few years ago to focus on an early passion for ceramics and completed the Post Baccalaureate program at Oregon College of Art and Craft in 2018. Focusing on household objects, domestic themes and spaces, Janet explored the ideas of memory and perspective. Her work is affected by the European influenced decorative objects, wallpapers and fabrics of her childhood.  


Janet attended Haystack Mountain School of Craft in 2017 and has exhibited in Portland, OR and North Haven, ME. She will travel to Scotland in the summer of 2018 to attend a glass casting workshop held at Northlands Creative. Janet is looking forward to pursuing her new journey in the ceramic world at Ash Street.






Madelynn Dubin grew up in rural Northern California with a love for art and nature. She initially enrolled in California State University Chico to study biology but discovered a passion for ceramics in her sophomore year. While pursuing her Bachelors of Fine Arts degree in Chico, she explored abstract organic ceramic sculpture and printmaking which she exhibited extensively in California. Since graduating in 2017 her practice has embraced performance art and functional pottery. She is thrilled to be at Ash Street Project and to develop these new exploits. In addition to making new discoveries, Madelynn believes this program will help her to cultivate her own lasting studio practices. Her goals are to challenge herself by embracing unfamiliar territories in order to gain a better understanding of her art and environment.