Co-Owner and Instructor at By All Means Arts pottery studio.
Wheel Throwing Instructor at The Art Center of Western Colorado (TAC)
Administrative Assistant for the Art & Design Department at Colorado Mesa University
Ashtonn Means lives and creates in Western Colorado, surrounded by the Colorado River Trail, the Colorado National Monument, and many other natural works of art. She was immersed in the clay community at a young age, beginning her journey at The Art Center of Western Colorado (TAC) at the age of thirteen. Ashtonn has embraced the art community as enthusiastically as they have embraced her through exhibitions, memberships, teaching, and volunteering. Ashtonn is co-owner and instructor at By All Means Arts in Fruita, CO, Wheel Throwing Instructor at TAC, and Administrative Assistant for the Art & Design Department at Colorado Mesa University. She enjoys sharing her love of ceramics with her students and passing down the knowledge and techniques she has acquired.
The Director of Ceramics at TAC, Terry Shepherd, has remained a consistent mentor and catalyst for Ashtonn’s artistic development. After earning her Bachelor of Fine Arts with a Minor in Psychology from Colorado Mesa University in 2016 under the mentorship and guidance of Jake Allee and KyoungHwa Oh, Ashtonn began teaching ceramics and developing her studio at home. She has attended workshops from numerous master potters during her studies to broaden her artistic abilities. In her classes, Ashtonn honors the lineage of ceramics by incorporating the techniques and teachings of the ceramic artists who have influenced her career.
Ashtonn, and her husband Matthew Jones (ceramic artist, oil painter, Instructor at Colorado Mesa University, and Curator for TAC) opened By All Means Arts Studio at the Fruita Arts Recreation Marketplace (FARM) in 2022. The studio space allows her to continue her professional development, expand her repertoire of work, and offer classes, community events, and workshops. Sharing the art world with her husband is something she cherishes every day. Ashtonn and Matthew collaborate within their studio practice and hope to continue combining techniques and working together to expand their business. Her dedication to art does not stop with ceramics; she nurtures a passion for cooking, Middle Eastern dance, and simple living, which all play important roles in her ceramics.
As a ceramic artist, I develop work that combines aesthetics and functionality. Through my artwork, I explore anthropomorphic forms and create pieces that pose individually in personality and whimsical nature. These animated forms are infused with a life-like presence. The performing arts are a catalyst for the surface design patterning, forms, and glazes. My specific inspiration has developed out of Middle Eastern dance traditions with costume design, henna, and dynamic movements that I seek to illustrate through expressive means.
The forms I create explore the soft and, sometimes dramatic, curves of the female figure that have sensual, nurturing, and mothering qualities. The arrangement of items into couples and small groupings communicates the connection and intimacy with relationships and families. This is illustrated by interactions between the forms themselves and how they are displayed together. I appreciate creating work that will be integrated into daily life through the simple moments of morning coffee and sharing a meal, enhancing the user’s appreciation of the present moment, and making artwork in service of others. As an artist, I seek to enrich the experience of everyone who interacts with a piece as part of their daily life by establishing an intimacy between artist and user.