CERAMICS WORKSHOPAt the Davidson Ceramics Studio we encourage all skill levels to work in clay, a timeless and enjoyable medium. Hand building, "throwing" on the potters' wheel, glazing and firing are all done on site. The studio is equipped with potter's wheels, slab roller, extruder, glazes and electric and gas kilns. We use high temperature reduction fired glazes that are beautiful and safe for tableware or sculpture. Come down to the wonderful off-campus site, see what you can make, and learn more! The Studio is located across the Ledyard Bridge on the Norwich side of the river. No advance sign up is required for open studio, you may sign up on your first visit.
SPRING 2016The Davidson Ceramics Studio opens for Spring term on March 28th.
Open to Dartmouth students with valid Dartmouth College ID identifying them as such.
Studio Hours: (Students: no intro class needed to come use the studio, just bring your ID)
Mon, Tue, Wed, Fri, Sat: 1 pm–5 pm
Thu: 1 pm–7 pm
USER FEES for open studio
- Students: $12 per term, payable by Dash or cash at the studio (located on the Norwich side of the river)
- Material fees for beginners: $5 for first 4 pounds of clay, includes glazes and firing, (payable by Dash or cash at studio).
HAND BUILDING AND POTTER'S WHEEL INSTRUCTIONAvailable anytime during our open hours (no class needed, just come in, even if you are a novice!) until May 11th. After May 11th, trimming and glazing only. We recommend coming in and starting at the beginning of the term—work in clay is a multi step process and takes time. Be sure to arrive at the studio by 4 pm at the latest (6 pm on Thursdays)!
Wheel work requires at least 3 visits to the studio. Most ceramic projects take at least three weeks from start to final firing. Please plan in advance!
HOW MUCH SKILL IS REQUIRED?
- Throwing on the potters wheel looks pretty easy but actually seems difficult at first. It is one of those endeavors that takes practice. The more you do it, the easier it becomes. We love to help beginners get started, so no previous experience is required.
- Hand building is for everyone! All levels can enjoy manipulating this malleable material. We have press molds to help you make a "slab built" soup bowl or coffee mug on your very first visit.
- Clay work takes time!! Please plan to arrive at least one hour before closing!
- On average it takes 3 visits to the studio to produce a piece.
- First is the fabrication stage. One works with the soft material either on the wheel or builds it "by hand" off of the wheel. Next is the "trimming" stage where the clay is worked at the "leather hard" stage to finish and refine the piece. Then each piece takes at least a few days to completely dry.
- After the drying stage the studio assistants take over and put your pot into a "bisque" kiln for the initial first firing. The bisque firing takes place in one of our electric kilns. When it comes out (a few days later) it will be a light pink color and it will be ready for glazing.
- Last stage: dipping your piece into a vat of homemade glaze. Then your pot will be stored on the shelves, awaiting the final firing in our large gas fired "reduction" kiln. The final glaze firing takes an average of 4 days from start to finish and the pots are fired to a high temperature of 2,350 degrees F.
Directions from the Green: walk down Wheelock Street towards the Connecticut River. Cross the Ledyard Bridge, turn right at the end of the bridge (there's a stoplight there). Take an immediate left into the large parking lot. The Ceramics Studio is the brick and white cape style farmhouse facing the parking lot.