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summer workshops in the north georgia mountains

updated wed 15 jun 05


Dawn G. Holder on tue 14 jun 05

The following workshops will be held at The Hambidge Center for Creative
Arts and Sciences in Rabun Gap, GA. Hambidge is nestled in a verdant valley
on 600 pristine acres of land. Our workshops are intimate and relaxed,
allowing students to interact closely with the instuctor and other
participants. For more information or to register for a workshop, call
(706) 746-5718, ext.1, email, or check our website

Debra Fritts “Exploring the Figure”

June 20 – 24, 9:30 am to 4:30 pm

Min 7, Max 12

$350, Lunch included

This workshop will explore the figure using hand building techniques and
personal mold- making. We will use found object impressions in slabs and
coils during the construction of the figure. Also, incised lines, carving,
and appliqué will be demonstrated and discussed. We will explore ways to
personalize the figure by using symbols. We will allow intuition and spirit
to be our guides. The head, torso, and full figure will be challenges for
the week. Surface decoration will be discussed.

Debra Fritts is currently the Director of the Clay Program at the Roswell
Visual Arts Center near Atlanta, GA. She completed her undergraduate
studies at the University of Knoxville in Tennessee, and did graduate
studies from 1984 to 1995 at Penland School of Art and Craft in NC, and
Arrowmont School of Arts in Gatlinburg, TN. Debra’s work has been included
in various exhibitions throughout the country, and is regularly shown at
Blue Spiral Gallery in Asheville, NC. Images of her work have been
published in various ceramic books and magazines, such as Ceramics Monthly,
500 Teapots by Kathy Triplett, and The Ceramic Glaze Handbook by Mark

Dawn Holder “Approaching the Wheel”

July 7 – 9, 9:30 am to 4:30 pm

Min 7, Max 12

$210, Lunch included

Have you felt fascinated and curious about the process of creating pottery
on a wheel, but never had the chance to try it? Here is your opportunity to
take a three day crash course in working on the wheel and learning the
mesmerizing skill of throwing pots. This course is designed for those with
little or no experience with clay. We will start from the very beginning.
We learn how to wedge clay and the basic steps needed to throw a pot on the
wheel. We will progress to creating various forms, such as cups and bowls.
If time permits, we will move into making handles and trimming feet. There
will be daily demonstrations, and students will have plenty of time to
practice and work on their own.

Dawn Holder lives and works in Rabun Gap, Georgia, where she runs the
Hambidge Center’s Pottery Program. She received a BFA in Ceramics, with a
minor in Latin, from the University of Georgia. Before coming to Hambidge,
Dawn lived in Atlanta and was Co-Director of Ballroom Studio Alternative Art
Space. During that time, she was also a studio assistant in Callanwolde Art
Center’s pottery program and a pottery teacher in several schools and art
centers. She is currently represented by Gardner Gallery in Atlanta and has
participated in many exhibitions throughout the US.

Bernadette Curran “Dare to Play”

July 11 – 15, 9:30 am to 4:30 pm

Min 7, Max 12

$350, Lunch included

In this class, we will investigate a playful approach to clay by
transforming simple pottery shapes into zoomorphic forms and their
architectural abodes. From quick gesture drawings on paper to more imposing
alterations of pots thrown fresh off the wheel, the spontaneity will allow
for both functional and sculptural solutions. Daily demonstrations and class
exercises will stimulate students to try more innovative modes of
construction. Emphasis will be on techniques such as folding, bottomless
cylinders, turning inside out, and pushing the clay. Bernadette will share
her ideas on drawing and painting with colored slips and sigs in order to
enhance the surface. Historical and contemporary examples of pots will be
referenced in slide lectures and group discussions. Because of the fast pace
of this class, pots will be bisque fired only.

Bernadette Curran, a studio artist and educator in Ardmore, PA, received a
BFA from Pennsylvania State University and completed an MFA in Ceramics at
The Ohio State University in May 2000. She received artist-in-residence
fellowships from Baltimore Clayworks, Chester Springs Studio, and the
Moravian Pottery and Tile Works. Her work has been exhibited in many juried
and invitational shows throughout the country. Bernadette is currently
teaching drawing and ceramic classes in the Philadelphia area and enjoys
traveling to present visiting artists workshops.

Leah Leitson “Responding to Touch: Porcelain Pots Thrown and Altered”

July 25 – 29, 9:30 am to 4:30 pm

Min 7, Max 12

$350, Lunch included

Working with porcelain, students will explore manipulating the form of
freshly thrown pots. Techniques and ideas will be directed toward making
functional forms, as well as exploring various ways of making handles,
spouts, and lids in an adventurous, playful, and creative atmosphere.
Demonstrations will include throwing techniques, off-wheel manipulation, and
paddling. Surface decoration will include working with slips and carving.
Critiques as well as informal discussion will take place, with an emphasis
in developing techniques by gathering and sharing ideas and applying them to
your own work.

Leah Leitson received an MFA in ceramics from Louisiana State University in
Baton Rouge and a BFA in ceramics from New York State College of Ceramics at
Alfred, New York. She completed residencies at the Archie Bray Foundation
in Helena, MT, and Banff Center for the Arts in Alberta, Canada. Leah is a
studio potter, has led many workshops throughout the US, including Penland
School of Crafts and Arrowmont School of Crafts, and is currently on the
faculty at Warren Wilson College in Asheville, NC. Her work is in the
collection of the Gallery of Art and Design, North Carolina State University
in Raleigh, NC; the Museum of Ceramic Art, Alfred, NY; Louisiana State
University School of Art Museum, Baton Rouge, LA. Leah’s work is published
in ceramics magazines, such as Ceramics Monthly, Art and Perception, and
Clay Times. Her work can also be found in various books, among them are:
Wheel Thrown Ceramics by Don Davis; Best of Pottery 2; and The Ceramic Glaze
Book by Mark Burleson, and others.

Randy Brodnax “The Dynamic Potential of Clay”

August 1 – 5, 9:30 am to 4:30 pm

Min 7, Max 12

$350, Lunch included

Texas craftsman Randy Brodnax will delight and amaze students with his
charming manner and plethora of pottery skills. Students will spend time
working on the wheel and improving their throwing technique. This workshop
will also feature decorative processes and firing techniques. Participants
will explore the dynamic potential of lichen glazes, copper flashing, and
oxide application. Pieces may be fired with a range of high-fire and
low-fire techniques, including wood and gas-fired raku, saggar pits, and
sawdust reductions.

Randy Brodnax, a life-long potter and educator from Dallas, Texas, promises
to entertain as he shares with participants his experiences in firing
everything from functional dinnerware to large decorative vessels. A
Louisiana native who has retained much of the Cajun joie de vivre with which
he was raised, Randy has spent a career building bridges among clay artists
of all levels of experience. Participants in his workshops are helped to
seek a refined focus, new direction, or simply to find camaraderie among
clay artists.

Annette Gates “Hand as Tool: Handbuilding with Porcelain”

August 15 – 19, 9:30 am – 4:30 pm

Min 7, Max 12

$350, Lunch Included

In this one week hands-on class, our goal will be to build porcelain pots
with function in mind. Slab construction will be the emphasis, taking
advantage of the textures and shapes impossible to achieve when using the
wheel. The woods surrounding the Hambidge Center will provide inspiration
for texture, form, and function. Simple but effective tricks will be taught
that can become building blocks for further investigations in clay. Active
studio time will be supplemented with information about contemporary and
historical references, and with group discussions to help dissolve the
mysteries of firing and glazing. We will be working with cone 6 porcelain
and stoneware. Some experience will be helpful, but the class is open to
all levels.

Annette Gates completed a BFA in 1993 at the University of Colorado and an
MFA in 1999 at the University of Georgia. Annette is a studio artist and
part-time instructor living in Athens, Georgia. She currently teaches at
the University of Georgia, and has also taught at Emory University in
Atlanta, Elon College in North Carolina, the Atlanta College of Art, and Red
Rocks Community College in Colorado. She has instructed workshops at
Arrowmont School for the Arts and Crafts, Good Dirt Community Clay Center,
and Chastain Art Center in Atlanta. In 2002, she completed two residencies:
one in Skaelskor Denmark at the International Ceramic Center, and the other
at the Women’s Studio Workshop in Rosendale, New York. In 2004, Annette
worked as an artist in residence at the Hambidge Center in Rabun Gap,
Georgia. Her work is exhibited locally and nationally.

I hope to see you here!

Dawn Holder
Director of Ceramics Program
The Hambidge Center
(706) 746-5601 Home/Office
(706) 746-3090 Studio