Lanzhou City University Ceramics Studio
April 1, 2024
"Through intention, serendipity, and a dedicated commitment to ceramics education, Keaton Wynn, in collaboration with some equally committed educators in China, created a remarkable educational experiment in Lanzhou, China that began at Georgia Southwestern University in 2012." This month's FREE article.
February 1, 2024
Black history is an expansive legacy that is so much more than a month. However, February is officially designated for celebrating it, and Studio Potter takes a closer look at the contributions Black ceramists have made, and continue to make, to the richness of American ceramics.
January 1, 2024
A story about Richard Nickel's favorite little clay buttons, given to him from a dear old friend in Buffalo, New York. "The little clay buttons represent all the moments we shared together and the ways she taught me to appreciate the small joys in life." – Richard Nickel  
November 1, 2023
This month, our board members – who are all fellow ceramists – reflect on what makes a beautiful pot. It is this anthology of perspectives that represents the core of Studio Potter - these short narratives provide a window into the range of experiences, values, and comradery that unite us. 
Antique Japanese kintsugi soba cup restored with gold. Photo by Marco Montalti
November 1, 2023
Taken for granted; your eyes stray to me after every creation.
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September 1, 2023
The Archie Bray Foundation campus teems with Robert Harrison's sculptures; his work is an icon of the Bray landscape and appears in every book, catalog, and tourist snapshot. Though Harrison has received acclaim for his sculptures, he has yet to be actively contextualized as a figure who, brick by brick, set the steadfast foundation for site-specific experimentation in the 1990s and program stability throughout the Bray's continued growth.
Pages from Commeraw’s Stoneware – The Life and Work of the First African-American Pottery Owner, By Brandt Zipp.
August 1, 2023
This cinematic volume will be steep reading terrain for all but the most empathetic, relentlessly inquisitive seekers of pottery forensics. Lacking such scholarship, crocks and jugs sit mute – defying us to imagine their origins: that synapse between touch and its evidence. To date, we have no comparable documentation of a single potter’s life.
Astour, near Zagora, Oasis region. These unique pieces, nearly 30” high, were commissioned by someone in a big city as decorative pieces in a hotel or mall. The white coating is ash from the fire pit.
August 1, 2023
"The weekly souk is a central part of rural life in Morocco. On an appointed day, established centuries ago, vendors congregate in a space, often on the edge of town, to sell their products. In a country that only has malls in the large cities, souks are the centers of commerce for everything locals need: livestock, food, housewares, clothing, bric-a-brac, carpets, and, of course, pottery." This month's FREE article.
Wild Clay, by Matt Levy, Takuro Shibata, and Hitomi Shibata, 2022, page 90-91 featuring local pigments found by K. Jodi Gear.
May 1, 2023
Throughout Wild Clay, the authors' combined experience gives us a comprehensive look at clay deposits around the globe and how they share similar minerals but vary in important ways from one location to the next. Their geological exploration from Montana to North Carolina and across the globe to Japan perfectly illustrates the saying Hitomi brings from Japan, "Treasure every encounter, for it will never recur."
November 1, 2022
Milestones beg for reflection – The ups and downs. The successes and failures. The lessons learned. The experiences, the relationships, the turning points. The Work. When Peter Callas’ solo museum exhibition tour was going to coincide with his fiftieth year as a practicing artist, he knew it was time to do something special. Aside from preparing an enormous body of wood-fired abstract sculptures and vessels to be exhibited, Peter found himself with stories to tell...
November 1, 2022
The expressions of a handmade pot – the quiet and understated manifestations of Michael's legacy – created a thoughtful and intentional movement within contemporary studio pottery. Michael's ability to integrate a pot's purposefulness with artistic philosophy is a hallmark of his creative wisdom.
October 1, 2022
The scenes described in this warmly written, sensitive, and engaging memoir could have taken place in any small town during this era. But ceramicist Owen Rye brings his reality to life for us as he fondly and not-so-fondly describes the people, places, and experiences that have influenced his rich and illustrious (albeit humble) life.
August 1, 2022
Another animated short produced by Studio Potter's official Cartoonist Richard Nickel, showcasing the work of painter and ceramist, Zuzka Vaclavik. "The Kiln is a poem, a kind of curse against potters who choose to practice their craft in a less than virtuous manner."
August 1, 2022
FREE ARTICLE! I want us to be sensitive to the romantic propaganda that perpetuates the individualist culture and mindset that bell hooks warns us of in her book, All About Love; New Visions, “The rugged individual who relies on no one else is a figure who can only exist in a culture of domination where a privileged few uses more of the world’s resources than the many who must daily do without.”
July 1, 2022
Definitions of theft, plagiarism, and appropriation became vital to this evolving dialogue — and again, the value of commingling showed itself. Each student, of course, had a distinct opinion on the question of morality that came from how intellectual property boundaries were drawn in their respective discipline. But collectively, the cohort agreed that learning from imitation was vital to understanding this discipline.
March 1, 2022
Shenandoah Valley potter and writer Rob Barnard’s collection of essays from 1987 through 2014 are compiled in his new book A Search for Relevance. The book revisits some of Barnard’s past writings dealing with the philosophical aspects of being a potter and what it means to dedicate oneself to the craft. The book itself is the epitome of grace, with photographs of Barnard’s work before each chapter, which incorporates large portions of white space and gives the pages a respectful and solitary beauty.
January 3, 2022
Flash tattoo illustrations created by Studio Potter's own cartoonist, Richard Nickel!
December 1, 2021
During the 1940s Gadsden County was home to sixty-seven Coca-Cola millionaires, and a $100,000,000 shade tobacco industry. With a deep history of racial and agricultural inequality, ensuing decades would leave Gadsden County as one of the poorest in the state and the only county in Florida with an African American majority population.
November 1, 2021
I don’t trust anybody’s nostalgia but my own. Nostalgia is a product of dissatisfaction and rage. It’s a settling of grievances between the present and the past. – Murray Siskind in Dom Delillo’s White Noise In overwhelming times of uncertainty, as an artist, what I can offer is a coherence of values and priorities expressed in the tools of conviviality and of the solitude I craft. These pots inhabit the world I want to live in, nostalgic for a past that never was.
September 1, 2021
When my sense of depersonalization is at its strongest, I feel as though I have become virtual and dreamlike myself and have lost my presence in real time and space.
August 1, 2021
We will probably always wrestle with the thorny question of how contemporary efforts to honor the beauty and complexity of traditional ceramic art can operate on a deeper level than merely “sampling” visual aspects of past achievements for individual purposes.
June 1, 2021
The possibility and potential of apprenticeship as a mode of training was of key interest to Gerry Williams, founding editor of Studio Potter.
April 1, 2021
A new animated comic from Richard Nickel for Studio Potter about the life of Adelaide Alsop Robineau and her masterpiece, The Scarab Vase.
April 1, 2021
There is an unbelievable amount of untapped potential in the digital market of ‘’branded” companies who need handcrafted items.
April 1, 2021
Then, the Last Prisoner Project came onto my radar. Their purpose is to free the 40,000-plus nonviolent prisoners who are in jail for cannabis. These nonviolent offenders remain in jail in states where marijuana is now legal.
February 1, 2021
“The world has been turned upside down.” The inversion has created pain, instability, and fear. Marion Angelica wondered whether it might also foster creativity and innovation. To find her answer, she issued a call to our field. Twenty-one artists responded.
January 4, 2021 I sat at the computer, feeling the void of the nonexistent National Council on Education for the Ceramic Arts 2020 conference, I clicked and signed up for the online three day, twenty-four/seven ceramic marathon.
January 4, 2021
Spoken of en masse, essential workers become nameless and removed, unknowable – an anonymous soundbite in the media. When things and people are anonymous they, by default, become disposable.
November 1, 2020
The first installment of a series on navigating the market as a studio artist, wherein we will share the wisdom of field and consider what the gallery/artist relationship might be in the future. Inspired by an inquiry from Osa Atoe.
October 1, 2020
Fueled by a curiosity about the limits of clay explored throughout human history, I know that everything I make exists within a larger context.
October 1, 2020
An excerpt from Women, Surrealism & Abstraction – The Poetry Project, at the Nora Eccles Harrison Museum of Art on the Utah State University campus in Logan, Utah.
October 1, 2020
...the stimuli that catch our attention in a moment in time are not actually ‘things” but rather the emotional and psychological association that the thing has triggered.
September 1, 2020
What follows are some highlights from two evolving conversations with Courtney M. Leonard and Paul S. Briggs as they grapple with our roles as makers, educators, and culture shifters in this time of COVID-19, civil uprisings, and an impending election.
June 1, 2020
She recalls how she wanted to be a geologist before discovering clay as art and continues to tell herself there is a beautiful connection there.
April 27, 2020
Trying times inspire revolution and innovation.
April 27, 2020
I had been following the mosaic fabrication of Montreal-based Mosaika for years. In February I invited myself to visit their studio for a behind-the-scenes tour. Graciously, they accepted my invitation.
March 24, 2020
I do not intend my voice to be the voice of all women. In this significant time of convergence between ceramics and fine art, we have the opportunity to contribute a more critical voice to our culture, which demands that we are represented by people from a wider range of perspectives. We must make space for critical writing from less represented viewpoints. We need to make space for more stories.
March 24, 2020
Perhaps it is years of conscious determination that create an air of inherent intuition. The first installment of a new Studio Potter series.
Mulberry Bridge with Diana Kersey, 2011. Photo Credit: Seale Photography.
February 24, 2020
Last month, in Part I, we left studio potter Diana Kersey, having just broken into the practice of public art. This month, while sharing her background from star athlete to ceramist, we explore further her approach to design, content, and community engagement as she completes her first major public art commission.
January 27, 2020
Greetings from the new Studio Potter Editor, "Let's not be reductive. Let's be expansive. If we make a list, let's do it to parse out the options rather than create an oppressive hierarchy. We can all benefit from the beautiful mosaic of potential within the ceramic medium. This is what Studio Potter has always done." Send your story proposals to
Eri Dewa Forest Porcelain Sculpture at Lacoste Keane Gallery
January 27, 2020
Lucy Lacoste generously shared the following catalog essay with Studio Potter, drawing our attention to the next generation of Japanese women in ceramics. The exhibition was inspired by two important past exhibitions; Soaring Voices (2009 – 2012) which traveled to 10 locations in the USA, and Touch Fire (2009) at Smith College, Northampton MA.
January 27, 2020
A three-part series on the ceramist as public artist. "Completing private and public commissions, in addition to creating, decorating, and firing thousands of vessels during my career as an artist/potter, is not unlike how I learned the game of basketball: through practice, study, failure, disappointment, victory, and determination. This artistic path, in addition to my recently completed public art projects, has allowed me to master my ceramic process and has prepared me to take on a project of any scale." – Diana Kersey, 2015
Illustration by Zoe Pappenheimer for Studio Potter journal, 2018.
September 30, 2019
It has been my pleasure to serve as the Editor of Studio Potter journal for the last five years. ... My parting request, dear readers, is that you get more people to read this journal.
Harriet Brisson Cube Striped in Half, 1989. Raku; 6 in. sq. 46th Concorso Internazionale, della Ceramica D'Arte, Faenza, Italy. From Brisson's 50NOW retrospective exhibition catalog.
September 15, 2019
Harriet had a mathematical mind, richly reinforced by her artwork and the life she created with her husband and fellow artist, David Brisson. Her modular ceramic creations, with components that fit together effortlessly, are evidence of her keen logic.