Friday, December 23, 2011

Pat Levi provided a thorough demonstration about clay for an open house

Pottery Classes Offered at BMCA Clay Studio Beginning January 9
By Rita Vermillion

Beginning on Thursday, January 5 from 4-6 pm with a demonstration of making pottery by teachers Charles Freeland and Annie Singletary, the Black Mountain Center for the Arts Clay Studio will kick off 2012 with classes and other activities centered on clay.   Classes begin on Monday, January 9, continuing for six weeks through February 16.  Each Adult Clay Class covers clay basics for beginners on wheel and hand building, but is also appropriate for students with previous clay experience.  The Clay Studio sits adjacent to the Center at 225 W. State Street.  To register or for more information call 828/669-0930, beginning January 3.

The BMCA Clay Studio is a teaching studio offering Adult Clay Classes that are taught by four experienced, area potters.  Upcoming classes will be offered on Mondays, Tuesdays and Thursdays. On Mondays from 4-6 pm Will Byers of Byers Pottery in Black Mountain is the teacher. On Tuesdays from 10 am – noon Annie Singletary of Annie Singletary Ceramics in Black Mountain teaches, and from 4-6 pm Charles Freeland of Charles Freeland Pottery in Montreat is the teacher. On Thursdays from 4-6 pm Geoff Bird of Morning Sky Pottery in Swannanoa teaches an ongoing class that has a rolling enrollment in which a student can start any week. 

Each class consists of six instructional sessions of two hours, and includes several times for practice in Open Studio each week.  Tuition is $170, which covers instruction and a lab fee for clay, glazes and firing.  In addition, an option for experienced potters who want to work on their own is available as an Independent Study during Open Studio times.  This option requires approval from Studio Manager Freeland, and costs $100 for six weeks (cost of clay is extra.)  A clay class makes a great gift for someone who wants to return to their love for clay or who wants to try it out for the first time. 

The Clay Studio Student/Teacher Annual Exhibit is currently on display at the Center’s Upper Gallery and features a wide variety of works from drums to dinnerware.  The Center will re-open January 3; hours are Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Friday, 10-5 and Thursday, 11-3. 

Sunday, November 27, 2011

It's that time of year again!

This Friday, December 2, please come to the Center for the Arts in Black Mountain.
Holly Jolly will arrive with the setting of the sun.

Festivities along all the streets will continue through the front door of the BMCA...leading you upstairs to a gallery exhibit of the ceramic artists of our Clay Studio.  Music and refreshments will add to your shopping pleasure.

Sales of clay art will include beautiful one-of-a-kind tree ornaments made by the community members.  There will also be gorgeous pottery for sale, with a percentage of all sales supporting the Center for the Arts. 

The exhibit will continue through the next month at The Black Mountain Center for the Arts in the gallery.

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Charles in a different role

Our own studio manager decided to wear a different hat last Friday,
and joined the fun at the Improv Theatre at BMCA.

Saturday, October 29, 2011

Clay Studio Update

November Is a Good Time for a Pottery Class at BMCA Clay Studio
By Rita Vermillion

The Black Mountain Center for the Arts Clay Studio is offering additional pottery classes slated to begin during November, just in time to make some fun gifts for the holidays. Or sign up for a class and give yourself a relaxing time that’s fun and therapeutic without leaving town. A class consists of six 2-hour sessions on the wheel or with slab work with an experienced potter, 25 lbs. of clay, twelve to fifteen hours a week of Open Studio practice time, glazing instruction, and firings of the pots you make. More information and details can be found at, or by calling 828/669-0930.
All classes are set up as Basic Adult Classes. Within that concept students may advance to as high a level as they and the teacher are willing to work together. Many students take a class over and over in order to continue learning about glazes, clay bodies, altered shapes, and more. Whether students are beginners or experienced they are able to find a time to work with the teacher to hone their skills.

Classes this November are on a staggered schedule.
  • The first class begins Tuesday, November 1 from 10 am – noon with potter Annie Singletary (
  • The second class begins Tuesday, November 15 from 4-6 pm with Studio Manager, potter Charles Freeland (
  • In addition, Geoff Bird ( teaches an ongoing class on Thursdays from 4-6 pm that students can join at any time.
Each of these three classes is taught for 6 sessions. The tuition, which includes lab fee, is $170.

Geoff Bird - photo by Barbara Rogers

In addition, Will Byers ( will teach a 4-week class on Mondays from 6-8 pm from November 28 – December 19, with tuition of $125. By appointment, the Clay Studio may offer Pottery Samplers to folks who just want a short-term experience while in town.

Each of the Clay Studio teachers has studied at the college level and beyond and has taught pottery to a wide age-range of students throughout their careers and each is qualified and trained to teach a wide-range of techniques. Open Studio is offered as a time for students to practice what they have learned in class, without instruction. An experienced potter or teacher is on hand to answer basic studio questions and procedures.

Friday, September 2, 2011

Schedule for classes and Open Studio times

(revised Sept. 2, 2011)


4 - 6 pm Open Studio
6 - 8 pm Adult Wheel Class WILL BYERS


10 am - noon Adult Wheel Class ANNIE SINGLETARY
Noon – 2pm Open Studio
2 - 4 pm Open Studio
4-6 pm Adult Wheel Class CHARLES FREELAND


4 - 5:30 pm YOUTH CLAY TIME (Sept.) ELISE REED
6 - 9 pm Open Studio


1 – 4 pm Open Studio
4 - 6 pm Ongoing Wheel Class GEOFF BIRD
6 – 8 pm Open Studio


2 - 4 pm Open Studio


Noon – 1 pm Open Studio


3 – 5 pm Open Studio

Friday, August 19, 2011

Class details

Discover your connection with clay! We will take you step-by-step through all aspects of either hand building/sculputural work or wheel-throwing. Both avenues will also inlude the firing & glazing process. Your clay class registration allows you to come for Open Studio sessions to practice or work on your current projects. Class sizes are limited. Register with Rita in the BMCA office (Main Building). The six-week sessions are $135 + lab fee of $35

(inludes 25 lbs of clay, glazing and firing).

IF you are already an experienced potter, you may inquire about the application process to be in our Independent Study program. Stop by or call: 828/669-0930

Saturday, July 23, 2011

Sarah's party

Our Studio Manager, Sarah Meyer, is headed for Grad School at Chicago Art Institute...and we will miss her!

Here are a few of our pictures, and there probably will be more coming from Sarah Vekasi.

Thanks to everyone for contributing for a pizza party, and we send Sarah off to Chicago with all our hopes that she'll remember the good times (and forget the dirty, sweaty, grungy, sink drippy, blue bucket gunk, clay smeared bad ones)

Was that pepperoni, vegie or cheese you just ordered?

 Photos courtesey Barb Rogers

The Cozarts stopped briefly to say hi...

 Of course once Zoe arrived, everyone had to enjoy her!  (Not a hard thing to do!)

Come back again when more photos of our lovely studio (and friends) are posted.  Maybe we can have some action of the studio next!

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

One teacher is leaving

Maureen Joyce, one of our teachers, is leaving to relocate to Pennsylvania with her family this summer.

Her students threw her a "going away" party yesterday.

Great food, good laughs, a few tears...Maureen will really be missed here.

Molly and Pat discuss a beautiful piece of design.

 Maureen's students wish her well in her travels.

Thanks to Sarah Vakesi for the photos above, which were FaceBook posted.  
The following photos were taken late in the party by Barb Rogers (missed the feast cause I was feeling poorly).
Trish and Sarah are glazing away!

Our good friend Bette is heading for Alaska, and probably telling Gale just what that means.
 Maureen empties the kiln and puts Marsha's pottery on her shelf.

 Maureen cleans up some of the food.  Do you get the picture?  She's everywhere at once, doing everything, and answering everyone's questions.  That's Maureen!

Joe says good bye to Maureen while Pat does some cleaning up.

The end of the party...but not the last with Marueen for those who love her...she will still be here for Open Studio on Tues afternoons for a while.

From mopping the floors, mixing glazes, firing kilns, making the signage, organizing the tile display, opting for Holly Jolly student show and sale, teaching so many of us how to do what we want done, starting a business with other potters...Maureen Joyce, you've made a great difference in the Black Mountain clay community.  I hope you'll find another clay studio that you can enjoy as much as you have nourished this one.

Saturday, June 18, 2011

Potery Market success

 Maybe this was a bit of a treasure hunt to find for some...

 But those who discovered this little enclave of pottery...

Found that they had the option to support the arts and artists...

And to enjoy looking at, picking up, and musing about the pottery...

All hand crafted right down the hill from this building...

The Saturday set-up was more pleasing in some ways...

 with coolness from the sunshine exploited...

So the wares didn't get too hot to touch.

Look at Barb's blog for pics of some of the lovely potters who were there.

Thanks Pat Levi for doing the organizing this year!

Congratulations Clay Studio students!  Excellent work! 

(the comments section starts with info that I just gave you...but please feel free to post your own comments about the studio, the potters, or the pottery!  Just click on "2 comments," then add your own, either anonymously or as your own name!)

Thursday, June 16, 2011

Pottery Sale SOON

Good luck with sale Fri and's going to be great!

Reminder, the Mon. studio visit has been postponed this week, due to Marjorie being out of town.  This visit will be rescheduled soon and Rita will let us know.

The Thursday open studio crowd were having a busy day, while enjoying each other's company.

Winner of the prettiest apron contest (which no one else knew about anyway).

Discussion of glazes is always of interest.

Students are always sharing what they have learned with each other.

More pictures of our clay community will be posted soon...