Virginia Scotchie artwork in Kosovo embassy

Internationally known: Ceramics professor lands another global venue

Artwork on display at American embassy in Kosovo

Virginia Scotchie, whose ceramic art is in private collections and galleries around the world, now has another international venue for her work: the U.S. embassy in Pristina, the capital of Kosovo.

Scotchie was commissioned by the U.S. State Department’s Art in Embassies program, and her art was unveiled when the embassy opened earlier this year. Scotchie traveled to Kosovo in 2017 to meet with local artists and to get a feel for the architectural details of the city.

“The mosques — their spires and domes — are stunning, and those shapes dovetail really well with some of the forms I often work with,” says Scotchie, head of the ceramics division in the university’s School of Visual Art and Design and a member of the International Academy of Ceramics. “The mountains around Pristina are beautiful, but it’s also sad because you can still see the effects of the war. So many people I talked to had lost fathers, mothers, sisters, brothers.”

This isn’t the first American embassy to feature Scotchie’s work. Robert Royall, a UofSC alumnus and former head of South Carolina’s Department of Commerce, served as ambassador to Tanzania in the early 2000s and requested some of her work to be exhibited on loan at the embassy in Dar es Salaam during his tenure.

But the ceramicist’s work has a following closer to home, as well.

“When the Asheville Art Museum opened in downtown Asheville, I received an email from the art curator asking for images of my work as they wanted to add it to their permanent collection,” Scotchie says. “The curator did not know that I grew up in Asheville where my mom still lives. For me, it was especially significant and a great honor to be included in the museum’s stunning collection of ceramic art.”

A dozen pieces of Scotchie’s art will be on view when the museum reopens in the coming months.

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