ceramic workshops

Ceramic Workshop Series

By popular demand, we are bringing back various ceramic artists for our Ceramic Workshop Series!

Using Zoom, each presenter will do a live ceramic workshop demonstration for three hours, PST. In an intimate setting, participants will have the exclusive opportunity to ask questions and engage in conversation. Registration fee is $50. In order to participate, Zoom must be downloaded in advance. The Zoom meeting ID will be provided four days in advance. If you have any questions regarding Zoom or would like to register through the phone, please feel free to call the gallery Wednesday through Sunday from 11 am – 5 pm at (530) 756-3938.

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Available Clay Sculpting Workshop

Enjoy previous workshops from your favorite artists anytime. Learn about hand-building, coil-building, slab building, and surface decoration! Downloadable videos are available for purchase.

*This video is for your use only. We do not wish for it to appear in social media or be emailed to others. If you teach a class and want to show it for educational purposes, that is acceptable. Otherwise, it is for your personal viewing only. We request for these videos to not be circulated in any way as it is not our intention to publicly share these workshops. Thank you.
Available Workshops

Alessandro Gallo: Workshop

Live Ceramic Workshop & Q & A

Date: January 16th, 2021

Time: 1 to 4 p.m. PST

Description: This 3 hour workshop will focus on hand-building and figuration and aims at sharing both techniques and ideas behind my work. Alessandro Gallo will give an overview of his approach from start to finish focusing on: Reference preparation, Building an armature, Hand-building solid, Cutting, Hollowing and putting everything back together, Firing & Finishing.

He’ll be using videos to document his process and quick demos to highlight tricks and talk about specific tools and materials. Throughout the second half he’ll talk about his work and answer questions from participants.

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John Toki

Live Workshop & Q & A

Date: Saturday, January 23rd 2021

Time (PST): 1 pm – 4 pm

Price: $50

Description:

John Toki is considered a technical expert in ceramics. He has created over hundreds of glazes, built an entire line of kilns, and wrote an introductory ceramic text entitled ‘Hands in Clay’ that explains techniques of how to work in clay. His outdoor freestanding clay sculptures are seen across America, and his engineering skills to produce large format clay sculptures has been taught and passed onto over a hundred of artists.

In this workshop, Toki will create a small free-standing sculpture made of colored clay, stoneware, and porcelain from start to finish. Toki will teach how to plan and execute a 4’ x 3′ standing sculpture while focusing on techniques of structural design elements, steel armatures, connections, reinforcing with fiber glass, color tinting, and kiln firing methods.

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Mark Abildgaard: Kiln Casting Glass

Live Glass Workshop & Q & A

Date: Saturday, January 30th, 2021

Time (PST): 1 pm – 4 pm

Price: $50

Description:

Mark Abildgaard has been making glass sculpture in his Northern California studio for over 30 years. He studied Ceramics at San Francisco State University and at the University of Hawaii. Many of the materials and pieces of equipment used to kiln cast glass are commonly found in most ceramic studios so that people who have experience in working with clay will find much of the kiln casting process familiar. By providing an introduction to this process Mark hopes to encourage people who have an interest working with cast glass or in adding a glass component to their own work will gain a clear understanding of this technique. This summer you will also have an opportunity to attend a multi-day workshop in hand’s on kiln casting by Mark Abildgaard at the John Natsoulas Gallery.

In this 3 hour online workshop Mark will present an overview of the entire kiln casting process by showing how to turn an object sculpted in clay into cast glass. He will share techniques for sculpting and texturing clay, making an open face plaster and silica mold, calculating mold volume, loading molds with glass and setting up an electric kiln for firing glass. He will explain how to create a firing schedule for casting glass using a programmable controller for an electric kiln.

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Bill Abright

Live Ceramic Workshop & Q & A

Date: Saturday, February 6th 2021

Time (PST): 1 pm – 4 pm

Price: $50

Description:

Bill Abright will discuss the evolution of his 50 year career in ceramics, and share his methods of creating uniquely abstracted figurative sculptures using thin plaster molds of fish, birds, faces, and figures. By composing thrown and extruded wet clay shapes into molds, he maintains the familiar proportions of his subjects while inventing his own interior complexity. Bill will discuss and demonstrate all stages of the process, including making thin plaster or FGR molds, throwing odd shapes, extruding clay sticks, assembling into the mold, drying, and firing. Pre-fired examples will allow him to continue using underglazes and cold finishes to demonstrate a completed sculpture.

Abright was introduced to clay by Bruce Duke at San Joaquin Delta College in Stockton in the late 60’s. He completed his graduate degree at San Francisco State in 1974 working with Bud McKee, Stephen De Staebler, Joe Hawley and David Kuraoka. Abright has taught ceramics at the College of Marin in Kentfield, CA since 1975 and has been influential in the lives of many artists. He has exhibited throughout the U.S. and his work is in many private and museum collections.

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ceramic workshop artist

Clayton Keyes

Live Ceramic Workshop & Q & A

Clayton-Keyes-Workshop

Date: Saturday, February 20th 2021

Time (PST): 1 pm – 4 pm

Price: $50

Description:

 Clayton Keyes will demonstrate the process of constructing a full torso, head, arm and hand in this 3 hour workshop and demonstration. This will be a slab built demonstration.

Artist Statement: I investigate the human figure in order to create work that will trigger emotional responses in the viewer: I portray emotions elicited by strife and oppression, which comes from an urge to impress upon the viewer the experiences of the oppressed and to draw from them empathy for such. I strive to imbue figures with narratives and emotions that may be difficult to confront. I equally endeavor to make the rendering of the figure visually stimulating and alluring. My wish is for the viewer to be confronted with and experience this tensioned duality, as it is this that allows me to indelibly affect them.

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Esther Shimazu

Live Ceramic Workshop & Q & A

Price: $50

Description:

In four workshops, learn specific areas of the body and how to build an entire figure with Esther Shimazu. Ahead of time, we will send you a list of all the supplies and tools you will need to do each workshop.

Torso, Feet & Body Parts Workshop – February 13th, 2021: We will begin with mostly slab and coil built hollow torso, thighs, calves. Each foot will be hollow with an upper and a sole and individual toes and toenails. Store well to prevent drying in several layers of soft plastic and/or in a plaster damp box or large plastic container.  Pieces should be damp but able to hold their shape and resist smushing.

Hands, Breast, Shoulders & Arm Parts Workshop – February 27th, 2021:Individual toe- and fingernails, toes, fingers, hollow palms, insteps and soles. Maybe wrap in soft plastic and store in a plastic container with a tight lid to keep safe.

Assemblage Workshop – March 6th, 2021: Posing and joining all the parts, seeing how they interact. Parts should still be moist but not wet. If time allows, some discussion of finishing and firing.

Head and Neck Workshop – March 20th, 2021:  Constructing a mask, installing eyeballs, teeth and tongue, then adding the cranium and ears and figuring out the neck. With the remaining time, allowing the piece to firm up so it can be maneuvered without fear of deforming.

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Jason Walker: Slipcast/Cup Workshop

Live Ceramic Workshop & Q & A

Date: March 13th, 2021

Price: $50

Description:

Jason will create cups and demonstrate his style of painting on them. He will also go into the process of slipcase and how he uses it in his work.

In my ceramic sculpture, I have been exploring how technology has influenced and molded our perceptions of nature. Yet, what is nature exactly? What image is conceived with the word? If typed into a google search, nature is defined as “the phenomena of the physical world collectively, including plants, animals, the landscape, and other features and products of the earth, as opposed to humans or human creations”. This description of nature excludes humans and human creations from nature. It creates two very separate worlds – the human made world and the non-human made world. How have we, human beings, arrived at such a perception of ourselves and nature? Part of an answer lies within the arena of ‘human creations’ – or Technology.

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Gerit Grimm: Wheel-Thrown Figure Assembly Workshop

Live Ceramic Workshop & Q & A

When: March 27th 2021

Time: 1 to 4 pm (PDT)

Description: Inspired by Italian Renaissance and fairytales, Gerit Grimm’s large-scale sculptures celebrate classical imagery and the figure.

In her online demo, this professor from University of Wisconsin, Madison, will show you how to assemble a figure using parts assembled on a throwing wheel. Gerit will also go in depth on which clay bodies to use and how to decorate their surface without using glaze. This 3-hour demo will feature a Q&A section where you can interact with Gerit and gain further insight on how to build stunning large human and animal figures like hers.

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Chris Riccardo: Hand Build Workshop

Live Ceramic Workshop & Q & A

Date: April  3rd, 2021

Price: $50

Description:

Chris Riccardo received his BFA in sculpture from the College of Fine Arts at Boston University in 1990. In 1995, Chris went on to open his own commercial bronze-casting foundry, RDK Studios in West Palm Beach, FL. It is there that Riccardo honed his skills and began teaching figurative sculpture at the nearby Armory Art Center. Shortly after, he decided to sell his foundry and concentrate on his work and teaching.  In 2007, Chris was named the Director of the Sculpture Department and Foundry Manager.

 More recently, Chris has joined again with artist Beth Cavener and her husband, Alessandro Gallo in Helena to create the Studio 740 – housed in a 98 year old seed and feed warehouse. It is here that Chris is developing his new vision of work.

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Clifford Rainey Workshop

Live Ceramic Workshop & Q & A

Date: April  10th, 2021

Price: $50

Description:

Clifford Rainey will be giving us a 3 hour workshop on his process.

Rainey’s exacting process of making work, and the sometimes excruciating wait for a finished body of sculptural works

Clifford Rainey is a British artist whose work has been exhibited internationally for 35 years. Principally a sculptor who employs cast glass and drawing as primary methodologies, his work is interdisciplinary, incorporating a wide spectrum of materials and processes.

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Clifford Rainey Workshop

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Ceramic Presenter Books
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Ceramics Workshop Series

“This is the kind educational, intellectual event one expects from museums or universities, but which public institutions seem less and less able to provide.”

– ARTWEEK