Women in Craft


shawanda corbett  turner

Primary Investigator

Corbett Shwanda

Wadham College

Ruskin School of Art








About the project:

Women in Craft is created as a response to the high level of visiting male artists who gave demonstrations and talks about craft in their studio practice. This project offers a culturally diverse perspective about craft through female artists and educators to the university and local schools and encourage young women to become craftsmen. The talk series consists of three visiting artists from different cultural backgrounds and at different stages of their artist/academic careers to talk about their work and what women in craft (traditional and non-traditional) means in their country. The artists will have the chance to include their work (small pieces) in an exhibition. The visiting artists for this project are Alisa Holen (Indiana, USA) who visited in February 2020, Yeliz Ökdem (Kastamonu, Turkey) and Harriet Speed (Oxford, England).



Shawanda Corbett: Shawanda Corbett is currently studying for her doctoral degree in Fine Art at the Ruskin School of Art and Wadham College, University of Oxford.

Website: https://www.shawandacorbett.com/


Visiting artists:

Alisa Holen (Indiana, USA)

Alisa (Al) Holen will be speaking about women in craft is something that she do enthusiastically and often. Much of the history of ceramics is based on the work of women, and the practically of the work is often at the core of who we are. Her talk will bebased on the persistence of the hand-made object; more specifically, the functional ceramic object. She will explore how these objects are valued, why these objects are made long after they have ceased to be a necessary part of our daily rituals, and why these objects continue to be sought after by both collectors and people with little or no art background.


Yeliz Ökdem (Kastamonu, Turkey)

Yeliz Ökdem is currently exploring ways to express the spiritual essence of the space between life and death afterlife. She has always been interested in nature and animals; however, birds have an intense personal connection to her. Of personal interest is the common childhood hobby of folding paper into abstract and stylised forms. This inspiration for the work comes from traditional origami, a technique she will modify through ceramic sculpture.


Harriet Speed (Oxford, England)

Hattie Speed describes herself as an artist-maker-creative-thinker, as her work encourages others to assert more value on curiosity and play through the objects they use. She has a multi-disciplinary approach, combining her interests in illustration and film with her training as a furniture maker. In 2016 she founded This Girl Makes, an on and offline community of designers and makers with events and DIY kits that celebrate and promote women in craft and design. In her talk, Hattie will describe her experiences as a woman in craft, her motivations for starting the This Girl Makes blog and her most exciting projects to date, including her research project A Maker's Guide to Grief.




Part of the Humanities Cultural Programme, one of the founding stones for the

future Stephen A. Schwarzman Centre for the Humanities.