Clay Workshops at Penland

Penland School of Crafts offers 1-, 2-, and 8-week clay classes taught by visiting instructors in our well-equipped studios. Class topics include functional and decorative pottery, wheel throwing, handbuilding, clay sculpture, glazing, and salt-, soda-, and wood-firing. Workshops are open to serious students of all levels unless specified in course description; beginners welcome.





spring eight-week concentrations

march 13 - may 6, 2016

Gertrude Graham Smith, Impress Tankards,

porcelain, slips, glazes, each: 5-1/2” tall


Susan Feagin, Collage Tray/Catch All, mid-range stoneware,

screen-printed slips and underglazes, oxidation fired,

4 x 9 x 8”


Ronan Peterson, Hippy Pitcher, soda-fired

earthenware/ceramic, 9 x 8 x 6”


Gertrude Graham Smith
with Susan Feagin and Ronan Peterson
Making Pots: Atmospheric Firings High, Low, & In Between

This workshop offers an exciting chance to explore the effects of salt and soda firing on pots, slips, and glazes made for low-, mid-range-, and high-fire. We’ll make thrown and altered functional forms with an eye to increasing our technical and aesthetic skills. We’ll fire high-temperature salt and/or soda throughout the workshop. Guest teacher Susan Feagin will spend two weeks focusing on handbuilt stoneware, mid-range soda firing, and embellishing with screen-printed underglazes and colored glazes. With guest teacher Ronan Peterson, we’ll explore the lower end of the firing range for two weeks, including earthenware vessels, terra sigillatas, slips, and glazes. We'll also focus on gaining familiarity and ease with firing kilns. On offer will be supportive attention to the interests and work of each individual. All levels. Code S00CA


Gertude: studio artist; residencies: Archie Bray Foundation (MT), Penland; teaching: Haystack (ME), Harvard University (MA), Arrowmont (TN); North Carolina Arts Council fellowship; collections: Mint Museum (NC), Yingge Ceramics Museum (Taiwan). Susan: Penland studio coordinator; exhibitions: Spruce Pine Potter’s Market (NC), North Carolina Pottery Center, MudFire (GA), Green Hill Center (NC), Clay Makers (NC); former Penland core fellow. Ronan: studio artist; teaching: Pocosin Arts Center (NC), Mudfire (Atlanta), The Kiln Studio (AL), Penland; exhibitions: Claymakers (NC), Piedmont Crafts Gallery (NC), 18 Hands Gallery (Dallas), Mudfire (GA); former Penland core fellow.
















spring one-week session 3

april 24 - 30, 2016

Liz Zlot Summerfield, Floral Box with Brick,

earthenware, terra sigillata, underglaze,

glaze, wire, 7 x 4 x 3”


Liz Zlot Summerfield
Soft-Slab Construction: The Basics & Beyond

This workshop will demystify working with soft slabs and offer the essential components needed to create unique slab-built pots. Students will learn the basics of working with earthenware clay slabs and paper patterns, beginning with simple functional forms and expanding to include components such as lids, feet, and spouts. There will also be time allotted for surface treatment using terra sigillata and underglazes. We’ll have ongoing discussions of function, scale, and the importance of intent. The workshop will emphasize one-on-one interaction in a supportive environment where experimentation is encouraged and individual development is nurtured. All levels. Code S03CB

Studio artist; teaching: Idyllwild (CA), Arrowmont (TN), Odyssey Center (NC); exhibitions: AKAR Design Gallery (IA), Santa Fe Clay, Baltimore Clayworks; collections: Mint Museum (NC), Ceramics Monthly (OH); Ceramic Arts Daily instructional DVD.



Summer 2016 Workshops


Complete listings for Summer 2016 workshops will be posted in late December. Registration for summer workshops is not open until the full workshop descriptions are available. Until then, browse the Summer 2016 preview for a glimpse of our upcoming classes.


Summer 2016 Workshop Preview