Community Classes

Art for Everyone!

Ceramics

Ceramics was one of the first media taught at the Southwest School of Art, and the Ceramics Department has a long-running commitment to working with adult students -- who number nearly 500 a year -- within a positive, creative, community atmosphere. You can find classes on hand-building, wheel-throwing, raku, glazing, digital embellishments and much more, taught by faculty as well as at frequent workshops by visiting artists.

1000 | Ceramics 101: The Potter's Wheel
This course is designed for the novice who has always wanted to try their hand at working on the potter's wheel before diving in to a longer class. Explore this very plastic and tactile art form and gain an understanding of using the potter's wheel as a tool to shape clay forms. Includes materials.

Level: Beginning
Instructor: Blake Kennedy
Dates: Sat, 3/4/2017 to 3/11/2017 | 9:00 AM - 12:00 PM
Studio: Wheelthrowing Studio | Building: McAllister Building
Tuition: $75 | Members/Seniors (65+): $75

 

1001a | Introduction to Clay: Wheelthrowing
This class will focus on the basic skills of wheel throwing-centering, opening, and pulling vessels-followed by learning to form cylinders, bowls, and cups. Students will also learn to evaluate form and how form serves a vessel's function while working in stoneware clay and high-temperature glazes. No class Mar 21.

Level: Beginning
Instructor: Blake Kennedy
Dates: Tues, 1/17/2017 to 4/4/2017 | 6:00 PM - 9:00 PM
Studio: Wheelthrowing Studio | Building: McAllister Building
Tuition: $325 | Members/Seniors (65+): $310

 

1001b | Introduction to Clay: Wheelthrowing
This class will focus on the basic skills of wheel throwing-centering, opening, and pulling vessels-followed by learning to form cylinders, bowls, and cups. Students will also learn to evaluate form and how form serves a vessel's function while working in stoneware clay and high-temperature glazes.

Level: Beginning
Instructor: John Nelson
Dates: Thurs, 1/19/2017 to 4/6/2017 | 9:30 AM - 12:30 PM
Studio: Wheelthrowing Studio | Building: McAllister Building
Tuition: $335 | Members/Seniors (65+): $320

 

1002 | Introduction to Handbuilding
Handbuilding is the fundamental construction method for creating sculptural and functional ceramic forms. Students will undertake a variety of projects including pinch-forming methods, round and flat coil construction, slab construction, and surface texturing and carving. Students will work with high-temperature stoneware clay and will be introduced to glazing techniques. No class Mar 21.

Level: Beginning/Intermediate
Instructor: Jennifer Datchuk
Dates: Tues, 1/17/2017 to 4/4/2017 | 9:30 AM - 12:30 PM
Studio: Handbuilding Studio | Building: McAllister Building
Tuition: $325 | Members/Seniors (65+): $310

 

1030a | Throwing Skills: Vessels
Focus on expanding and refining throwing skills while concentrating on specific thrown forms. Presentations and discussion will help students understand how to throw and construct vessels that integrate form with function. NOTE: Section A will focus on vessels that pour: pitchers, creamer, ewers, and teapots. Section B will focus on vessels that are used for drinking: cups, mugs, tumblers, and teacups. Students will also be introduced to an array of surface decoration techniques and how to load and unload downdraft gas kilns. Prerequisites: Basic Skills: Introduction to Throwing and Basic Skills: Introduction to Handbuilding.

Level: Intermediate
Instructor: Benner Barclay
Dates: Tues, 1/17/2017 to 4/4/2017 | 9:30 AM - 12:30 PM
Studio: Wheelthrowing Studio | Building: McAllister Building
Tuition: $335 | Members/Seniors (65+): $320

 

1030b | Throwing Skills: Vessels
Focus on expanding and refining throwing skills while concentrating on specific thrown forms. Presentations and discussion will help students understand how to throw and construct vessels that integrate form with function. NOTE: Section A will focus on vessels that pour: pitchers, creamer, ewers, and teapots. Section B will focus on vessels that are used for drinking: cups, mugs, tumblers, and teacups. Students will also be introduced to an array of surface decoration techniques and how to load and unload downdraft gas kilns. Prerequisites: Basic Skills: Introduction to Throwing and Basic Skills: Introduction to Handbuilding. No class Mar 23.

Level: Intermediate
Instructor: Blake Kennedy
Dates: Thurs, 1/19/2017 to 4/6/2017 | 6:00 PM - 9:00 PM
Studio: Wheelthrowing Studio | Building: McAllister Building
Tuition: $325 | Members/Seniors (65+): $310

 

1034 | Totem Poles
Students in this class will use handbuilding skills to create forms that stack to create a sculptural totem pole. Presentations on the history and tradition of the totem pole will be discussed to create a contemporary and personal sculptural object. Students will be guided in finding a personal and cohesive theme-abstract, figurative, or symbolic-and encouraged to create a totem with three to seven sections (not to exceed six total feet in height). There will be demonstrations on installation techniques and materials needed to complete the project; students will purchase their own installation materials. See *CERAMIC NOTE. Prerequisite: Students must have had at least two handbuilding classes.

Level: New | Intermediate/Advanced
Instructor: Cecilia Hancock
Dates: Thurs, 1/19/2017 to 4/6/2017 | 9:30 AM - 12:30 PM
Studio: Handbuilding Studio | Building: McAllister Building
Tuition: $335 | Members/Seniors (65+): $320

 

1035 | The Figurine
Figurines-yes those small statues your grandmother collected-depict the human figure, animals, myths, or deities. This art form ranges from extremes of sweet and sentimental to hyper-detailed, over the top or silliest of kitschy scenarios. This class will discuss the history of the figurine by examining distinctive style of Meissen in Germany to Staffordshire in England, as well as contemporary interpretations of figurines. Small-scale handbuilding techniques, and low-fire decorative surface applications will be demonstrated. Prerequisite: Students must have had a minimum experience of two handbuilding classes. See *CERAMIC NOTE.

Level: New | Intermediate/Advanced
Instructor: Jennifer Datchuk
Dates: Mon, 1/23/2017 to 4/3/2017 | 6:00 PM - 9:00 PM
Studio: Handbuilding Studio | Building: McAllister Building
Tuition: $325 | Members/Seniors (65+): $310

 

1036 | Mold Making Workshop
Sign up for this early workshop and create molds ready to use in other ceramic classes. This workshop will cover the technical basics on how to make a two-part plaster press mold for clay objects. In these intensive two days, students will learn about different types of plaster, the best shapes and objects for mold making, setting up and fabricating molds, volume calculations, and plaster weights. Most importantly we will discuss the benefits of plaster molds and clay multiples in your studio practice. Please bring a lunch both days. Prerequisite: Students must have had a minimum of one introductory level class.

Level: All Levels
Instructor: Jennifer Datchuk
Dates: Sat & Sun, 1/14/2017 to 1/15/2017 | 10:00 AM - 4:00 PM
Studio: Handbuilding Studio | Building: McAllister Building
Tuition: $160 | Members/Seniors (65+): $145

 

1037 | Ceramics 101: Planters
Say goodbye, winter and hello, spring-welcome in the warmth and sunshine with darling little planters for your spring posies. Let this class be like happy hour, only with similar creative young professional looking to enrich their work week. Basic handbuilding skills, like pinch pots and coil building, along with decorative techniques like slab cut-outs to create one-of-a-kind planters will be covered. Tuition includes one bag of clay, glaze materials, and use of tools. Additional clay and tools are available for purchase from the ceramics studio.

Level: New | Beginner
Instructor: Jennifer Datchuk
Dates: Wed, 1/18/2017 to 2/15/2017 | 6:00 PM - 8:00 PM
Studio: Handbuilding Studio | Building: McAllister Building
Tuition: $155 | Members/Seniors (65+): $140

 

1053 | Home Studio Firing: Cone 6 Glazes and The Electric Kiln
This class will focus on home studio practices with emphasis on developing glazes for electric kilns, as well as firing of kilns-how to properly load and unload-and program firings using the School's Skutt electric kiln. Kilns will be fired with work created independently while exploring and experimenting with cone 6 glazes. Students will research and develop a cone 6 base glaze with the assistance of HyperGlaze (a computer glaze software) and add colored stains and oxides to create a line-blend of colors that are unique to each students work. Prerequisite: Students must have had a minimum experience of two intermediate-level courses. See *CERAMIC NOTE.

Level: New | Intermediate/Advanced
Instructor: Miguel Abugattas
Dates: Mon, 1/23/2017 to 4/3/2017 | 6:00 PM - 9:00 PM
Studio: Wheelthrowing Studio | Building: McAllister Building
Tuition: $325 | Members/Seniors (65+): $310

 

1060 | Terra Sigilatta: Gryphons, Harpies, and Satyrs-Oh My!
Oh how time flies… 3,000 years ago the Greeks began refining clay to make "sealed earth"-Terra Sigilatta or Terra Sig for short. Greek potters and painters depicted their cultural beliefs, both real and imagined, on earthenware pottery and statuary. Can't tell a Kylix from a Krater? The class will include a field trip to the San Antonio Museum of Art to view their collections of ceramic antiquity. Learn this ancient process while making several Terra Sigs as well as decoration techniques for your own classics. So grab your favorite rhyton and don your best toga! Prerequisite: Students must have had a minimum experience of two intermediate-level throwing classes. The museum fee is not included. See *CERAMIC NOTE. No class Mar 22.

Level: New | Intermediate/Advanced
Instructor: Kevin Van Winkle
Dates: Wed, 1/18/2017 to 4/5/2017 | 9:30 AM - 12:30 PM
Studio: Wheelthrowing Studio | Building: McAllister Building
Tuition: $325 | Members/Seniors (65+): $310

 

1066 | Pushing Boundaries: New Directions in Ceramic Sculpture
This class will focus on combining ceramic sculpture with other sculptural materials. Students will explore the fabrication of ceramic forms, utilizing alternative surface techniques, assembling sculptures with epoxy, integrating other sculptural materials into their projects, and challenging notions of how to present their work. Students will work with clay, epoxy, paint, and other sculptural materials-metal, wood, wire, fabric, and found-of their choosing. We will also look at examples of historical and contemporary mixed-media ceramics to broaden our range of influences. Bring your creativity and exploratory spirit! Prerequisite: Students should have a minimum of two handbuilding classes. Mixed media materials will be purchased separately by the student. See* CERAMIC NOTE.

Level: New | Intermediate/Advanced
Instructor: Jared Theis
Dates: Mon, 1/23/2017 to 4/3/2017 | 9:30 AM - 12:30 PM
Studio: Handbuilding Studio | Building: McAllister Building
Tuition: $325 | Members/Seniors (65+): $310

 

1075 | Screen a Hipster on it!
The Thermo Fax Machine is a vintage piece of office equipment once used by schools for making ditto masters and transparencies. This machine makes quick and easy screens for printing images onto clay (similar to screen printing) without the mess and hassle of burning a silk screen. It is a great tool to explore hipster imagery-a bird, fox, owl, mustache, or other retro design-on a hand-made cup or plate, or other hand-built form that lends itself to use of this imagery process as a surface decoration on clay. Slip and underglaze can pass freely through the screen to provide imagery onto a wet clay surface. No class Mar 22.

Level: All Levels
Instructor: Jennifer Datchuk
Dates: Wed, 3/1/2017 to 4/5/2017 | 6:00 PM - 8:00 PM
Studio: Handbuilding Studio | Building: McAllister Building
Tuition: $180 | Members/Seniors (65+): $165

 

1101 | Ceramics 101: May Your Weekend Be Happy
Ceramics 101 is for those 20-30 somethings wanting to meet new people while having some fun. Leave the worries of the work week behind and enjoy creative social time while learning the basics of working with clay. Learn to make small household items in clay like cups for weekend beverages and bowls for Sunday brunch. Tuition includes one bag of clay, glaze materials, and use of tools. Additional clay and tools can be purchased from the ceramics studio. No previous clay experience needed. Please bring a lunch both days.

Level: New | Beginner
Instructor: Jennifer Datchuk
Dates: Sat & Sun, 5/6/2017 to 5/7/2017 | 10:00 AM - 4:00 PM
Studio: Handbuilding Studio | Building: McAllister Building
Tuition: $145 | Members/Seniors (65+): $130