The Month in Clay – October 2009

October is nearly upon us so it’s time to think about what the month ahead will bring us in the way of ceramics. As usual, there is no shortage of exciting clay events and exhibitions, as you’ll see from the few highlights I have gathered below.

The other exciting thing about October is that it is the month that Ceramics Monthly publishes its annual Gallery Guide. This listing is THE guide to ceramic galleries all across the globe. Check it out here. Plus, check out our Gallery Guide Featured Galleries to look at more images of great ceramic work. – Jennifer Harnetty, editor.


Anacortes, Washington
“Jim Romberg: Paintings and Ceramics” is on display at Anchor Art Space ( October 2-31. A opening reception will be held October 2, beginning at 5:00pm with a gallery talk titled “Art in Your Life: Appreciating, Assessing and Purchasing Works of Quality and Interest.”Jim Romberg has been making raku ceramics for 37 years. His work in ceramics began at Pottery Northwest in Seattle, Washington. He later earned an undergraduate degree from Pomona College in Ancient and Medieval History and an MFA from the Claremont Graduate School in ceramics. Recently retired as professor emeritus from Southern Oregon University, Jim has established a studio in Abiquiu, New Mexico. Deeply engaged with the history and practice of raku ceramics, Romberg’s work integrates sculptural and wheel-thrown forms with a colorful painterly surface bearing the distinct marks of the raku engagement with fire and smoke.

If you don’t find anything going on in your area here, be sure to check out the
Ceramics Monthly Calendar!

Los Angeles, California
“Parallel Universes,” an exhibition of work by ceramic artist Keiko Fukazawa and mixed media sculptor Edward Lightner is one display through October 10 at L2kontemporary ( her new body of work, Keiko Fukazawa contrasts China’s rapid economic development against its human rights abuses. This is all set within the larger context of global consumption and environmental degradation. Fukazawa incorporates Beanie Babies, Chinese Scholar’s Rock and Chinese traditional auspicious motifs in order to explore the cultural and social issues impacted by this rapid change. She uses these objects in a charmingly whimsical way that at the same time allows her to comment upon the growing commercialization, consumerism and globalization occurring in all societies.
Kansas City, Missouri
“Expressive Surfaces,” a hands-on Potters Council workshop featuring Lorna Meaden (work shown below) and Mark Peters (work shown at left), will take place October 23-25 at Red Star Studios. The format of this workshop is designed to allow attendees a more intimate class size, hands-on learning, and three full days of studying techniques presented by two renowned ceramic artists. Some techniques that will be covered include: decorating pots using the Mishima slip inlay technique, creating interesting surfaces with an assortment of modified tools, using drawn patterns to handbuild spouts and handles, altering pots on and off the wheel, discussing firing processes and glazes that enhance surfaces, making an assortment of clay stamps, and much more.Space is limited! Register before October 2 and save $50!

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Leeds, England
An exhibition of works by Susan Nemeth is on view through October 31 at the Craft Centre and Design Gallery ( City Art Gallery.“The
work is made from laminated sheets of colored clays inlaid with hand
cut patterns, which are then beaten, rolled and stretched over molds,”
states the gallery’s manager, Jane Needham.  The final form is forced
from one single flat sheet of clay, which ensures a simple shape.  The
pieces are then buried in sand to prevent warping and fired to their
limit, which achieves a smooth, matt, watertight finish.“Fabric
design from the 1950s and 60s influence her current work.  The painters
Ben Nicholson, Paul Klee, Henri Matisse and Eva Hesse influence her
surface patterns also; patterns which are often found in the background
or in detail of these painters’s works.”
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
On Saturday, October 10, 2009, from 6pm-10pm, The Clay Studio ( is tenting off its parking for the organization’s 35th Birthday Party! Thirty five years ago, The Clay Studio started as a small group of artists with a collective vision. Today, the organization welcomes more than 30,000 visitors, students and artists each year (not to mention the 1,800+ community members that they visit through the Claymobile).So, celebrate with the Clay Studio on October 10. $35 (in honor of its 35 years) covers unlimited live music, local handcrafted Beer & BBQ, dancing, sneak peeks at resident and associate artists in action, live wheel-throwing demonstrations and a fabulous silent auction featuring the work of the Clay Studio’s many talented artists.
Baltimore, Maryland
In October, six nationally- and internationally-known ceramics artists and educators will come to the Maryland Institute College of Art (MICA – to take part in the “Fabricating Ideas Workshop and Symposium.” The artists will spend a long weekend hosting lectures for the MICA community, work-shopping techniques and processes in the Art-Tech Center, and brainstorming the effects and contributions of new technologies on art and ceramics. There will be free public lectures featuring discussions about the visiting artists’ artwork, research in new technologies, contemporary ceramics and the future of the field.Steven Thurston, Associate Professor at The Ohio State University, and Del Harrow, Assistant Professor at The Pennsylvania State University, will lecture Friday, October 2, Noon-1pm, Main 110, Main Building. Chad Curtis, Assistant Professor at Tyler School of Art, Temple University, and Forrest Snyder, Independent Curator and Artist, Boston, will lecture Friday, October 2, 7-8pm  Brown 320, Brown Center. Neil Forrest, Professor, Nova Scotia College of Art and Design and Jeanne Quinn (work shown above) Associate Professor, University of Colorado at Boulder, will lecture Monday, October 5, 11am-Noon, Main 110, Main Building.
Columbia, South Carolina
“Ceramics : Southeast,” an invitational ceramics exhibition that celebrates contemporary ceramics from traditional pottery to non-traditional sculptural forms, will open October 12 at the McMaster Gallery in the Department of Art at the University of South Carolina (. Artists included are: Alice Ballard (work shown below), Russell Biles, Jim Connell (work shown at left), Don Davis, Lauren Gallaspy, Bruce Gholson, Samantha Henneke, Frank Martin, Scott Meyer, Gay Smith, Paula Smith, Mike Vatalaro, and Jerilyn Virden. The exhibition continues through November 19.

A Panel Discussion entitled “Facing the Future” with artists Don Davis (TN), Scott Meyer (AL) and Gay Smith (NC) led by USC Professor Virginia Scotchie will take place Thursday, October 15 at 4pm in room 239 of McMaster. There will be a reception with the panelists Thursday, October 15 from 5-7pmIn addition, a ceramics workshop with Gay Smith called “Throwing with Porcelain” is scheduled for Thursday, October 15  and Friday October 16 from 10-3 in rm 103 of McMaster. For more information email
Chicago, Illinois
“Skin,” an exhibition of work by ceramic sculptor Thomas Schmidt, will be on display at the newly reopened Dubhe Carreno Gallery ( through November 7. In “Skin,” Schmidt presents seductive and flawlessly constructed works, in porcelain and on printed acetate, driven by his ongoing exploration of materials and processes.  The surface treatment of his work reveals time-based processes that allude to memory and how it is recorded and transformed.  His carefully designed forms and random organic imagery on his surfaces generate a dialogue between industrial manufacturing and natural processes.Dubhe Carreño met Tom Schmidt while she taught at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago.  Dubhe remarks, “I was immediately taken by his sensibility and understanding of the materials and processes with which he was working.  The quality of his work and the maturity of his concepts are remarkable.  In a post-baccalaureate program, Tom was making work above the level of any graduate student.  At his school’s 10’ x 10’ studio, evidence of his talent was literally spilled on every surface, working in the common areas, finding room to expand and experiment.”
Canton, Ohio
A solo exhibition of work by William Brouillard is on view at the Canton Museum of Art ( in Canton, Ohio, through November 1. The exhibition includes ceramic vessels and large-scale platters that tell stories of the industrial age.“My recent work for this exhibition references several ceramic traditions,” explains Brouillard. “I refer to the first of these traditions as ‘The Palace Art Pot.’ Historically, palace art pots were made to demonstrate the wealth and power of the owner or institution that displayed them. They were large scale works that reflected the culture and architecture of the times in which they were made. In addition to their role as a mirror of high culture, they were also made to tell stories, commemorate events or individuals.”
  • Large Scale Architectural Ceramics Workshop in Mashiko Japan by Ikuzo Fujiwara
    October 29-Nov 1st. Email Steve Tootell:
    Still spaces.
    Coinciding with the annual Mashiko Pottery Festival-over 1,000 potters converging on the hometown of Shoji Hamada. Co-led by Euan Craig featured regularly in Ceramic Monthly.

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