Pottery classes for all ages offeredPottery classes for all ages and skill levels will be offered beginning Jan. 23 at The Phipps Center for the Arts.
Pottery classes for all ages and skill levels will be offered beginning Jan. 23 at The Phipps Center for the Arts. These classes include Beginning/ Intermediate Pottery on the Wheel and Hand-Building with Clay for teens and adults, Clay Class for Kids for children ages 7 to 12, and Family Pottery Night for all ages.
In Beginning/Intermediate Pottery on the Wheel, which will be held eight Mondays, from Jan. 23 through March 12, from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m., beginning participants will learn basic techniques for throwing pots on the potter’s wheel. For the intermediate potter, this class offers in-depth development of more advanced skills and techniques. A mix of students at various skill levels together in class makes for a fun and diverse learning environment. Instructor Ben Gavin lives and maintains a clay studio in River Falls. He has spent over 10 years in the field of ceramics and received a fine arts degree from the University of Wisconsin at River Falls in 2002. Gavin works with clay in figurative sculpture and pots for daily use. He has traveled and studied sculpture in Europe and completed a year of formal cultural study in Japan encompassing the Way of Tea, ceramics, and Zen. He has taught children’s and adult classes in basic to advanced wheel techniques and various methods of ceramic sculpture. The class size is limited to eight and the fee is $207.
The Hand-Building with Clay class offers students an opportunity to work with internationally-known local ceramic artist Jay Jensen. This five-week class, which will be held Saturdays, Feb. 4 through March 3, from 1 to 3 p.m., is designed to expose students of all skill levels to techniques such as pinch, coil, and slab construction, or a combination of all. Participants will explore the creation of forms such as cups, bowls, plates, as well as possibilities for sculpture. At the final class meeting, students will explore different techniques to finish and glaze the work. Jensen lives and works in River Falls. He received his B.S. in liberal arts from the University of Wisconsin - River Falls in 1991 and his M.F.A. from the University of Minnesota - Twin Cities in 2005. He has recently shown his work at Mudworks Gallery in Decatur, Ga., AKAR art and design in Iowa City, Iowa, Southside Gallery in Oxford, Miss., Red Star Ceramic Center in Kansas City, and Seasons on St. Croix in Hudson. Jensen has also shown in galleries in Berkeley, Calif.; Philadelphia, Phoenix, Japan and Australia. In addition, he has work in the collection at the Crocker Museum of Art in Sacramento, Calif. Jensen has also been included in publications such as Ceramics Monthly, Clay Times, and Beautiful Use Contemporary American Pottery, by Kevin Hutch. He currently teaches art courses at Inver Hills Community College in Inver Grove Heights. The class fee is $140.
Students enrolled in Beginning/Intermediate Pottery on the Wheel and Hand-Building with Clay have access to the pottery studio on Fridays from 5:30 to 8:30 p.m. and Saturdays from 9 a.m. to noon. No instruction will be given during the open studio sessions. For each class, students are asked to wear clothes that can get dirty, and bring an old hand-towel, a sketchbook-type journal, and a basic tool kit. Tool kits will be available for purchase on the first day of class for $15. The class fee includes one 25 lb. bag of clay, glazes, and firing. Additional clay may be purchased from the instructor for $15 per bag, which includes glazes and firing.
Clay Class for Kids will be offered six Mondays, Jan. 23 through Feb. 27, from 4:30 to 6 p.m. In this class, students will learn techniques of throwing pottery on the wheel and will build their skills and understanding of the sculptural possibilities of clay through pinching, coiling, and slab construction. Students will be given freedom to experiment with their new skills and will receive significant one-on-one attention. The class size is limited to eight. Gavin is the instructor and the class fee is $113, which includes all materials and supplies.
Family Pottery Night, which will be offered four Wednesdays, from Feb. 1-22, from 6:30 to 8 p.m., is designed to introduce families to pottery techniques and vocabulary while creating something they will treasure. Participants will learn hand-building techniques such as pinched forms, coil building, and slab construction. Instructor Mark Lusardi is a potter and sculptor from Northern Maine who now resides in New Richmond. He has been creating professional works of art for over 25 years, and has earned several awards of recognition in art shows and juried events. Lusardi is actively working in raku pottery and tours the Midwest teaching and demonstrating the raku firing process and how it complements his work. The class fee is $99 per adult and child pair, and $24 for each additional child, which includes all materials and supplies.
For more information, or to enroll, go to www.ThePhipps.org, call (715) 386-2305, or stop by The Phipps.