Ayumi Horie, one of the co-organizers of The Democratic Cup, is a full-time studio potter from Portland, Maine who makes functional pots, mainly with drawings of animals. She was recently awarded a Distinguished Fellow grant in Craft by the United States Artists and is the first recipient of Ceramics Monthly’s Ceramic Artist of the Year award. She has taught workshops and given lectures at many universities, art centers and residencies in the U.S. and abroad, including the Archie Bray Foundation, Haystack Mountain School of Crafts, Greenwich House Pottery, Penland School of Crafts, Peter’s Valley, Arrowmont School of Arts and Crafts, the Northern Clay Center, and the International Ceramic Research Center in Denmark. She served on the board of directors at the Archie Bray Foundation for nine years, where she was a resident for two years between 1996 and 1998, and is now on the board of the American Craft Council. Her work is in various collections throughout the US, including the Museum of Art and Design in New York City. Currently, she is collaborating on a public art project, Portland Brick, in Portland, Maine and runs an Instagram feed called Pots In Action, which features ceramic art from all over the world.