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Kurt Ill and his splendid bird bath.
Lucky birds!
Now's the time...
. . . to sign up for our Sunday wheel throwing classes with David Timm. These classes start October 4 and space is limited.

Introductory Wheel Sundays
  • Sun, Oct 4-Nov 8, 11:00 am-1:00 pm, with David Timm

Continuing Wheel Sundays
  • Sun, Oct 4-Nov 8, 1:30-3:30 pm, with David Timm

The morning class is for beginners or for students who have taken the beginning class and want to repeat the introductory lessons. The afternoon class is for continuing students who are ready to learn more and move to the intermediate level.

The Early Bird Discount for these classes is still available through tomorrow, October 1.

Starting soon...
When the going got tough, we innovated by offering an expanded slate of wheel throwing classes and both on-site and Zoom access to our hand-building classes. Enrollment in our late fall on-site classes will continue to be limited to preserve safe social distancing. All of our studio health and safety precautions, including those for students, will remain in effect.

Here's our class lineup for late fall:

Introductory and Continuing Wheel
  • Thurs, Oct 22-Dec 3, 4:30-6:30 pm, with Kay Yourist
  • Thurs, Oct 22-Dec 3, 6:30-8:30 pm, with Kay Yourist
  • Thurs, Oct 29-Dec 10, 10:00 am-12:00 pm, with Nancy Bulkley
  • Thurs, Oct 29-Dec 10, 12:30-2:30 pm, with Nancy Bulkley
  • Mon, Nov 2-Dec 7, 6:30-8:30 pm, with Kevan Wilson
Early Bird discount available through Oct 5 for classes starting Oct 22 and 29 and through Oct 25 for class starting Nov 2.

Coffee and Clay
  • Sat, Oct 31-Dec 5, 9:30-11:30 am, with Nancy Bulkley
  • Wed, Nov 4-Dec 23, 10:00 am-12:00 pm, with Nancy Bulkley
Zoom registrations also available for these classes
Try It Once on the Wheel
  • Sat, Oct 24, 1:00-2:30 pm, with Kay Yourist


If you have any questions about our classes, please call Kay at the studio from 1:00-5:00 pm Monday through Friday at 734-662-4914.
Studio life
Strictly utilitarian?

Not on your life! Our students are learning that the humble spoon, scoop, or ladle can become a utensil of beauty at the hands of an artist, as shown by the pieces in this photo. The scoops in the top row are by Laura Bower. The spoons (with fork) in the bottom row are, from left, by Amy Roehrig, Meejin Lee, and Dianne Jazdzyk.

Teacher Nancy Bulkley loves to make spoons because they are fun to use and also offer endless possibilities to play with despite their simple form. Have you seen Nancy's spoons with the whimsical animals at the tops of the handles?

Spoons, scoops, and ladles may be small, but they are not modest and can bring charm and elegance to your table.
Ready, glaze, fire!
Here's the tentative date for loading wares for our October gas kiln firing:

Sunday, October 25

As usual, we will load and fire in October when we have accumulated enough pieces to fill the kiln. Be sure to check with the studio for October firing updates.
Cheek by jowl...
..that's how pieces are sitting on our crowded bisque shelves. If you have bisque ware on our shelves that was fired in September, please glaze it or pick it up and take it home by Saturday, October 31. Regrettably, any unclaimed bisque ware remaining after that date must be discarded to make room for new work. (And we hate doing that!)
Potter's quick tip
Q. I'd like to use a carving medium to add texture and color to my pieces. How do I get started and what do I need?

A. This video from Don Hall of Potters for Peace shows you the process from A to Z: how to transfer your design to the carving medium, how to apply it to your clay, and how to color it. He also explains how both hand builders and wheel throwers can use this decorative process.

The carving material Hall uses is Speedy Carve from Speedball, which also offers carving tools for the material. You can, however, obtain and use various carving materials and tools from a variety of different sources.

This video is part of our continuing series for beginners.
Clay lover's web events
Work by MCAA juror
Malcolm Mobutu Smith
On-site exhibitions

Area art museums are beginning to open again. We'll let you know when new ceramics exhibitions are on display.

Monumental: The Art of Viola Frey. Now through October 25. Flint Institute of Art. More . . .

Michigan Ceramics 2020 Biennial Exhibition & Competition. October 16 - November 12, Michigan Ceramic Arts Association (MCAA). More . . .
Virtual tours and videos

Meanwhile, here's a selection of pottery events, exhibitions, and museum tours that you can visit and enjoy online.

Michigan Ceramics 2020 Biennial Exhibition & Competition. October 16 - November 12. Virtual tour at Birmingham-Bloomfield Art Center. More . . .

Cup XVI: the Intimate Object. October 3 - 30. Charlie Cummings Gallery. This is a show and sale, but feasting your eyes is free! More . . .

Gardiner Museum online exhibitions of ceramic art. Toronto. More . . .

Museo Internazionale delle Ceramiche. Faenza, Italy. More . . .
Call for entries

Fourth Biennial Juried Exhibition: Breakfast.  April 10 – August 28, 2021, The International Museum of Dinnerware Design. More . . .
Resources for potters
Need more space...
...for your plants? Twists of Life potter Kalia Chellen demonstrates how to throw a lovely planter with multiple tiers. See the finished planter, filled with plants, and Chellen's other pieces, on her web site.

Hand builders, you can make a tiered planter like this, too. Why not give it a try?
Consolations of clay
. . . says potter Kate Charlton-Jones in her article, "The Healing Art of Pottery," from The Woven Tale Press, as she describes how making pottery helps her endure challenging times.

" . . . making pots is what cleanses my mind and helps release my anxieties. As I work, alone, often cold and always filthy, I’m unconsciously or consciously working through troubles that otherwise cloud my thinking. . . . I find a rhythm in preparing the clay, and then another one as I work on the wheel. It’s the rhythm that propels you forward and it’s in that forward motion that creativity happens and a calmness, even happiness, is possible."

So keep making pottery, being creative, and finding your calmness in these difficult days for all of us.
A big thank you to our friend Joanne Daniels for sharing this article with us.
Studio and Gallery hours
Here are our current open studio hours:

  • Tuesday, 12:00-6:00 pm
  • Wednesday, 12:00-5:00 pm
  • Friday, 12:00-6:00 pm
  • Saturday, Noon-6:00 pm

Please be aware that we will continue to adjust our open studio hours as additional classes on our schedule start and activity restrictions are lifted. As is customary, only registered students will be admitted to the studio during class times.

We have fresh-air tent space available and limit our indoor capacity to 10 students at the pottery wheels, 2 students in the glazing room, and 2 students at the large work table. We will continue to observe all our health and safety precautions during open studio time. Please sign in when you arrive and sign out when you leave. And make sure to clean your work area thoroughly before leaving.

We also have curbside delivery of clay, tools, and pottery. We will keep you posted on changes in hours in our mailings and here on our website. If you have a specific need, please call Kay at the studio from 1:00-5:00 pm, Monday through Friday, at 734-662-4914.

Yourist Studio Gallery
1133 Broadway
Ann Arbor, MI 48105
734-662-4914 |

•Classes and workshops
•Community studio workspace
•Pottery tools for sale
•Exhibit gallery