Scenes from teaching Adult pottery at Potters Place. I’ve been lucky to have had two groups of fantastic students this past session. Here is a glimpse at some of the amazing work they have created both on the potters wheel and by hand.
Potters Place is a not for profit pottery school and a cooperative studio for clay artisans. Located in Walpole, Massachusetts, it is interwoven into the community it has called home for over 30 years. Their mission is to spread their love of pottery. This takes many forms from raising funds through the sale of specific pottery (most recently to benefit the League School art program) to going into schools with clay to enrich the students.
The students who transition from elementary to middle school annually work on a tile project that celebrates their interests and leaves a lasting artifact. Completed tiles are hung on the wall and students are able to stop in and see them years later.
Working with the art teachers, Potters Place instructors provide real clay to students. Showing them ways to make their two dimensional drawings into three dimensional tiles with coils, incising, scratch and attach with slip method, and more.
Adding color with glaze is the second phase where the students add details to their tiles.
Parents are always interested in getting involved in this project. We welcome them to the Potters Place studio where they put on the final glaze before the tiles go into the kiln.
When the tiles are finished, Potters Place delivers them to the school and they are framed and hung on the wall. The students are thrilled to see their very own tiles for years to come!
Find out more about Potters Place in Walpole, MA by clicking over to the webpage at www.pottersplace.info
Please join me and the 23 Potters Place clay artisans at our cooperative studio’s annual spring show and sale!
Friday, May 1, 6pm to 9pm
Saturday, May 2, 9am to 8pm
Sunday, May 3, 10am to 4pm
We’ll have hundreds of beautiful, hand-crafted, one-of-a kind pottery items available. The theme is “Spring Brings New Beginnings” and our Chairperson is Jeannette McGillicuddy, Co-Chairperson is Gay Calo. This Spring our potters will be donating special pieces and the proceeds will be given to the Animal Protection Center of Southeastern Massachusetts (APCSM). A Meet-the-Artists reception takes place Friday evening, where you can enjoy refreshments & meet the 23 featured Potters Place artisans. Free admission & parking are available and we accept credit & debit cards.
More about Potters Place:
Potters Place is a co-operative, not-for-profit pottery studio located in Walpole, MA offering a variety of hand-building & wheel-throwing programs for children, teens & adults of all levels. Whether you are interested in a one-time workshop or a 6-week series, our skilled instructors will inspire you to create functional & sculptural works of art. We have 23 members, most of whom started out as our students. Twice a year we hold a Show & Sale (our next one is May 1-3) to showcase the work of our members & to raise a donation for a local charity. We offer many classes & workshops for all ages & skill levels, so check them out to sign up for some fun & creativity! Click here for the website www.pottersplace.info
For the last few years, I’ve been accompanying my friend and fellow Potters Place potter, Susan Brum to elementary schools in Walpole to work on tiles with 5th grade students. We work with the art teachers to help them realize their goal to have their students work with real clay.
Prior to our arrival, students have worked on a layout for their tile. It is our job to teach them to transform their two dimensional drawing into a three dimensional tile. We visit each school twice. The first time, we instruct the students how to create their tile s. The second time we teach them how to use ceramic paints to add detail and finish off their pieces.
Sue and I hand cut all the tiles for the students from a low fire clay. We make up slip and bring extra clay for each student. All this prep work takes place at our pottery studio: Potters Place. When we arrive at the schools, we work with each student to help them think about how to translate their work to the tile. We teach them to slip and score, roll coils, incise and add. These subtractive and additive methods are the tools the students use.
These 5th graders are on their way to creating beautiful tiles that reflect their interests. Here are some of the results from today’s class at the Elm Street School:
To find out more about Potters Place and how we share our love of clay with the community, click here.
Next week we paint! Stay tuned!
With 96 tiles in tow, Potters Place potters Susan Brum and Lisa Walker visit the 5th grade at Elm Street Elementary School to instruct on clay. This is the first of a two part visit. Part one gives the students a chance to create a tile using a wet clay tile. We teach them how to create relief (build up and add on) as well as to incise or carve to translate their two dimensional idea into a three dimensional sculptural tile.
The students worked really hard. They were focused, creative and enjoyed working with the clay. At the end of our visit, we gave a preview of the painting they will do when we return next week. They will be able to add details and color before their work heads back to Potters Place to fire in the kiln.
Some of the many beautiful tiles created at Elm Street School:
Makes you smile, doesn’t it?!
Great attention to detail and the look of someone having a lot of fun playing with clay!
Over the course of a few short winter months, I will have had the opportunity to work with 5th grade students in 3 different schools. Bringing artists into the classroom is rewarding for students, teachers and the greater community.
Using wet clay, the students are taught to create a three dimensional tile from a two dimensional format. Watching the students respond to the clay is always interesting. They have to think outside the box to solve problems involving spatial relationships, how to minimize details, how to reproduce a flat object into a three dimensional form and more. There is technique to learn when working with a new medium such as “score and slip”, coil rolling, incising and the proper way to build up the tile.
There is nothing better than experiencing the student who has the “ah ha!” moment as this one did with the tile pictured above. He struggled to create the perfect moment when the ball swished through the net. I’d say he was quite successful!
The rain held off and I was able to participate in opening day for Bird Park’s first farm stand today with my fellow potter, Susan Brum. We featured functional pottery under our tent. Moose Hill had a table set up with fresh veggies and an opportunity to join their CSA. It was a wonderful morning spent talking with customers and sharing the food and pottery connection.
Moose Hill is a Trustees of the Reservation property as is Bird Park. Their joined efforts brought the farm stand to East Walpole. It will be open from now until October 5th from 9-12 every Saturday.
Potters Place, my cooperative pottery studio is having its Annual Spring Show & Sale,with hundreds of hand crafted, uniquely designed and glazed pottery items available.
Show & Sale hours are: Friday, May 3, 6–9 p.m.; Saturday, May 4, 9 a.m.–8 p.m.; and Sunday, May 5, 10 a.m.-4 p.m. A Meet the Artists reception takes place Friday evening, when you can enjoy refreshments and meet the 22 featured Potters Place artisans.
Our studio is located at 127B Old West Street in Walpole center. Admission is free and parking is available at not charge. Credit and debit cards are accepted.