ceramics

CERAMICS CLASSES AT BYRDCLIFFE

The tradition and the future of ceramics is alive and centered at the historic Byrdcliffe Barn. Our Ceramics classes take place in the Lower Level of Upper Byrdcliffe Barn on 485 Upper Byrdcliffe Road, Woodstock, NY. The studio is available when classes are not in session (studio is open Monday through Saturday, closed on Sundays). The $30-$50 materials fee includes clay glazes and firing of first box of clay. Extra clay and firings after first box have an additional charge.

 

2016 Ceramics Class Schedule

Our Ceramics classes for 2016 with Byrdcliffe Ceramics in Residence Director, Rich Conti and other guest instructors are offered at the Ceramics studio in the Byrdcliffe Barn.

 

Wheel Throwing: multi-level – Rich Conti
Tuesdays: 10:00 am – 1:00 pm OR 5:30 – 8:30 pm (7-week class)

Session 1: April 5 – May 17
Session 2: May 24 – July 5
Session 3: July 12 – August 23
Session 4: September 6 – October 18
Session 5: November 1 – December 13

Price for 7-week class: $240 for members, $260 for not-yet members
Materials fee: $30 (will cover first box of clay and bisque firing); in addition, if you would like your work high fired in our gas kiln, it will cost $0.04 per cubic inch (for example, to have an average size mug fired will cost around $2.50)
Description: Classes are geared towards individualized instruction, based on your skill level. Learn to work on the potter’s wheel or improve the skills you already possess. In this class you will make cups, bowls, vases, plates, or whatever else you can imagine. Learn techniques for decorating and glazing your creations.
What to bring to class: Basic pottery tool kit, medium terry cloth hand towel, an apron is optional.

Pay your class fee online! Or you can call us at 845.679.2079 to pay over the phone with a credit card.

payonline

If your organization, business, or school would like to schedule a private group class with Rich Conti, please contact derin@woodstockguild.org for rates and availability. A minimum of 6 students required.

Wheel Throwing: multi-level – Ben Suga
Tuesdays: July 12 – August 23, 1:30 – 4:30 pm (7-week class)

Price for 7-week class: $240 for members, $260 for not-yet members
Materials fee: $30 (will cover first box of clay and bisque firing); in addition, if you would like your work high fired in our gas kiln, it will cost $0.04 per cubic inch (for example, to have an average size mug fired will cost around $2.50)
Description: This class will focus on the wheel and is open to all levels. Pacific Rim traditional approaches to throwing technique and surface design will be highlighted. Utilizing these techniques and philosophies, the student will accrue the knowledge and experience with which to continue a personally directed practice.
What to bring to class: Basic pottery tool kit, medium terry cloth hand towel, an apron is optional.

 

rich conti

 

Pit Firing Primitive Clay: multi-level – Rich Conti
Wednesdays: 10:00 am – 12:00 pm (15 classes)

Class dates: May 25, June 1, 8, 15, 22, July 6, 13, 20, 27, August 3, 10, 17, 24, 31, September 7 and 14

Class payment options:
• 1 class: $28 for members ($30 for not-yet members) plus $10 materials fee
• 3-Class Pass: $82 for members ($90 for not-yet members) plus $20 materials fee (limited open studio time with the 3-Class Pass; arrangements to be made with instructor); 3-Class Passes are non-refundable and are good only for the year in which they are purchased
• 7 classes: $165 for members ($180 for not-yet members) plus $30 materials fee
• 15 classes: $340 ($360 for not-yet members) plus $60 materials fee
Firing fees: none
Description: Experience the original way of making ceramics. Pit firing dates back over 30,000 years. We will create small sculptures and hand-built pottery and then learn how to construct and fire a pit-fired kiln.
What to bring to class: Basic pottery tool kit, medium terry cloth hand towel, an apron is optional.

Intro to Wheel Throwing: multi-level – Rich Conti
Wednesdays: 1:00 – 3:00 pm (15 classes)

Class dates: May 25, June 1, 8, 15, 22, July 6, 13, 20, 27, August 3, 10, 17, 24, 31, September 7 and 14

Class payment options:
• 1 class: $28 for members ($30 for not-yet members) plus $10 materials fee
• 3-Class Pass: $82 for members ($90 for not-yet members) plus $20 materials fee (limited open studio time with the 3-Class Pass; arrangements to be made with instructor); 3-Class Passes are non-refundable and are good only for the year in which they are purchased
• 7 classes: $165 for members ($180 for not-yet members) plus $30 materials fee
• 15 classes: $340 ($360 for not-yet members) plus $60 materials fee
Firing fees: per cubic inch
Description: Learn the fundamental skills of throwing on a potter’s wheel. We will cover the steps from centering the clay to understanding the process in creating cylinders, bowls and spheres. We will then learn to glaze what we made. This introductory class will teach you a new skill or refresh an old one.
What to bring to class: Basic pottery tool kit, medium terry cloth hand towel, an apron is optional.

 

nathan gwirtz

 

Intro to Clay and Design: multi-level – Nathan Gwirtz
Saturdays: 10:00 am – 12:00 pm OR 1:00 – 3:00 pm (22 classes, two per day on 11 Saturdays)

Class dates: June 4, 11, 18, 25, July 2, 9, 23, 30, August 6, 13, 27

Class payment options:
• 1 class: $28 for members ($30 for not-yet members) plus $10 materials fee
• 3-Class Pass: $82 for members ($90 for not-yet members) plus $20 materials fee (limited open studio time with the 3-Class Pass; arrangements to be made with instructor); 3-Class Passes are non-refundable and are good only for the year in which they are purchased
• 7 classes: $165 for members ($180 for not-yet members) plus $30 materials fee
• 13 classes: $310 ($330 for not-yet members) plus $50 materials fee
Firing fees: per cubic inch
Description: This class will focus on the basic introduction to working with clay. Hand building and tile projects will be emphasized along with the exploration of ceramic surface decorations. No experience is necessary for this class. You will introduced to slab rolled tiles and hand building techniques, which will provide a canvas to explore combining imagery with your creations. Techniques covered will be drawing, carving stamping, painting and transferring designs on clay using underglazes, slips and glaze. This class will provide a forum for discussing visual imagery and narrative design in your work. Express yourself in clay!
What to bring to class: Basic pottery tool kit, medium terry cloth hand towel, an apron is optional.

 

michael connelly

 

Special Workshop: Pottery in the Moment with featured artist Liz Lurie
Saturday: July 16, 10:00 am – 5:00 pm

Workshop fee: $70 members, $80 for not-yet members
Materials fee: none
Description: I am not generally a “sketcher” or a “planner.” My design process comes directly from observations and making. Looking closely at the work from the cycle before, or at objects which intrigue me, my process always starts with a series of questions; why is this pot more harmonious than another, why do the bones of one pot show through and another not, does my eye get led around the pot or does it stop? At the heart of my pottery is a desire for harmony, structure, and a strong sense of physicality. In this day-long workshop, we will discuss these questions and ideas while I make a variety of thrown and altered forms ranging from the simple to the complicated. I will make everything from large two-part pitchers to jars, baskets, teapots, bowls and cups.
What to bring to class: Bag lunch; we will have a break between 1 and 2 pm.

Special Workshop: Lidded Pots, Pitchers and Bowls with featured artist Michael Connelly
Saturday and Sunday: August 20 and 21, 10:00 am – 5:00 pm (you can register for either just Saturday or both weekend days)

One-day workshop: Saturday, August 20 – demonstration day
Two-day workshop: Saturday, August 20 (demonstration day) and Sunday, August 21 (hands-on day) – Sunday is limited to 12 participants

Workshop fee:
• One-day Saturday: $70 members, $80 for not-yet members
• Two-day Saturday and Sunday: $130 members, $140 for not-yet members
Materials fee: for two-day workshop add $30
Description: In this workshop, we will focus on lidded pots, pitchers and bowls. By analyzing the interior of the vessel comparatively to its exterior, participants will learn how to develop their own lidded vessels, pitchers and bowls that are balanced both visually and physically. There will be discussions and demonstrations on building well-fitting lids, handles, spouts, and finials. For people participating in both days there will be opportunities for students to develop their own work, as well as time to exchange ideas and concerns about their work. Demonstrations will be on throwing and assembly, but hand-builders are welcome as well.
What to bring to class: Bag lunch; we will have a break between 1 and 2 pm. For Sunday, bring a basic pottery tool kit, medium terry cloth hand towel, an apron is optional.

 

liz lurie

 

ABOUT OUR INSTRUCTORS

Rich Conti initiated the current ceramics program at Byrdcliffe. He has been the director of the program for 13 of the past 15 years. He received his BFA from Alfred University and in 1999, was a resident at the Archie Bray Foundation. Rich’s work is firmly grounded in functional pottery, where simple aesthetics and the details of function are combined to bring objects into existence for daily use. Known as the “El Camino” of potters, when asked about whether he considers himself an artist or crafts person, Rich responds, “Is the El-Camino a car or a truck?”

Michael Connelly is a potter in Philadelphia, as well as the Head of Ceramics at Montgomery County College in Blue Bell, Pennsylvania. He received his MFA from Alfred University. Connelly has taught and presented lectures and workshops nationally and internationally, including classes at Alfred University, Alberta College of Art and Design, Haystack School for Crafts, Penland School of Crafts and The Archie Bray Foundation. His utilitarian pottery is in the permanent collections of China Yaoware Museum, the Schein-Joseph International Museum of Art, Ashville Museum of Art and Long Beach Museum of Art.

Nathan Gwirtz is a Brooklyn and Catskill based ceramic maker. He has been a practicing studio potter since 2002. He started teaching ceramic technique in 2007 at clayworks on Columbia in Brooklyn. His tableware and tiles provide a canvas for richly illustrated, carved designs that reimagine the traditions of decorative arts.

Liz Lurie has worked as a studio potter and teacher since 1991. She has done residencies at Peters Valley and Watershed Center for Ceramic Arts. Along the way she has built and fired numerous wood kilns, finally settling in Chittenango, NY where she has recently finished her  ‘Train” style wood kiln. She teaches both children and adult classes out of her studio. Her work can be found at The Signature Shop in Atlanta, GA, as well as 20/East in Cazenovia, NY, and her own show room.

Ben Suga was born in Yankton, South Dakota in March of 1981. He primarily works in clay, concrete, and wood and has a strong interest in the movements and rhythms of daily ritual. Ben completed an MFA in Sculpture at Rutgers University, Mason Gross School of the Arts in New Brunswick, New Jersey in May of 2015. His formal training began in Japan on the northern coast of Kyushu studying under two teachers, Takahide Ochiae, from the Imari Porcelain School and the other, Taki Nakazato, a 15th generation potter, the grandson of a Living National Treasure as designated by the Japanese government. After returning to America, he completed a two-year apprenticeship under Richard Bresnahan, a Nakazato apprentice, on St. Johns Monastery in rural Minnesota. His apprenticeship focused on the tea ware and ceremony that came into particular blossoming in the Momoyama period in 16th century Japan. Ben lives and works in a small studio in the woods about an 11 minute drive from Woodstock, NY.

ben suga