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“The purpose of art is nothing less than the uplifting of the spirit.” Pope John Paul, II     

For over 30,000 years men and women have used clay to create objects for ceremonial, spiritual and functional purposes. Clay has informed how and where communities have developed and how we function among each other. In the ceramic program through Ceramics I, II and Advanced Ceramics we strive to understand this extraordinary material. We learn to manipulate clay to create skillful 3-D forms that reflect the intention of the maker, to understand the properties of clay to help create, explore and develop ideas and use clay as a medium for communication of artistic inquiries and discoveries.

Ceramics I

This semester long course introduces students to the basics of working with clay. Hand building techniques of slab, coil and pinch construction will be our main focus with limited wheel throwing practice. Surface decoration, the process of firing and an introduction to traditional and contemporary artists are additional areas of concentration.

Ceramics II

This semester long course continues developing students’ skills in hand-building techniques while spending a little more time on the wheel. Refining the form, surface decorating and assemblage will be our focus. Also, we will have the opportunity to visit a contemporary potter’s studio or gallery and examine non-traditional approaches to working with clay. 

Advanced Ceramics

This year-long course gives our students more time to explore the many possibilities of working with clay. We will further develop hand-building and wheel-throwing skills, giving more emphasis to refined three-dimensional design and surface decoration. Contemporary as well as traditional artists, their techniques and career paths will be explored. Visiting artists and a field trip to explore education opportunities and working local artists round out this popular class.