Juried by a select committee of artists, each submission for It’s Only Clay (IOC) is judged in four areas: function, form/aesthetic, craftsmanship, and surface design. Cash prizes equal $1,600. There are also additional ‘purchase awards’ for the Margaret H. Harlow Collection.
What is a purchase award? The Margaret H. Harlow Collection is an exclusive teaching exhibit and collection occasionally displayed in Bemidji State University’s Talley Gallery. A purchase award is when the university’s committee chooses to buy an IOC submission to include in this prestigious collection. All Harlow Purchase Award pieces have become a part of this permanent teaching and exhibit collection dedicated to functional ceramics at Bemidji State University.
About MARGARET H. HARLOW – Margaret Harlow graduated from Bemidji State Teachers’ College in 1936. After graduation, she left to pursue a career in the Women’s Army Corps, traveling throughout the world and retiring with 20 years of military service. She developed an interest in pottery while in London during the 1950s.
While living in California, Margaret was active in arts organizations. In 1973, she established the Margaret H. Harlow Ceramics Collection at Bemidji State University with the donation of funding and a collection of original ceramic works of art. Annually, Ms. Harlow donated additional funds and original ceramic works of art for this teaching collection. She died July 7, 2007, in California.
Selected ceramic works of Margaret’s are displayed in hallway exhibition cases near the ceramics classroom on the ground floor of the Education Arts building at Bemidji State University.