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pottery wheel


The Studio Arts Program in Ceramics emphasizes diversity and self-directed research. Conceptual and technical exploration are encouraged. The program teaches students essential techniques, while also helping develop critical thinking and creative problem-solving skills.

The introductory ceramics course provides a foundation in hand-building, wheel-throwing and clay and glaze mixing. The upper division courses are taught in a separate studio with dedicated wheels and work spaces for each student. These courses center on the exploration of a wide range of clay forming techniques, including model making and slip casting, both functional and sculptural, as well as clay and glaze mixing and a variety of firing methods.

ceramics kiln


In the culminating Independent Study and Honors Studio courses, students develop a personal body of work in preparation for setting up a professional studio or entering graduate school.

Other hallmarks of the program include group critiques, which encourage the development of critical dialogue and give students experience in both offering and receiving feedback and thoughtful criticism. Additionally, students are exposed to visiting artists from the region as well as nationwide and the annual Godfrey Seminar in the Business of Crafts addresses the business aspects of various artistic endeavors.

Student ceramics sales each semester help to fund student attendance at statewide and national clay conferences. Field trips to studios in Asheville and Atlanta, and various nearby museums and galleries draw on the rich resources of Western North Carolina in both traditional and contemporary ceramics.

The Ceramics Program features two main rooms with four smaller specialty rooms and a covered outdoor kiln area. One of the main rooms accommodates beginning students; the other accommodates advanced students. The ceramics studios are equipped with potter's wheels, a slab roller, flexible shelving and heavy-duty work tables.   

The classroom dedicated to upper level ceramics students offers dedicated wheels and workspaces for each student. Directly accessible from each of the two studio are rooms for raw materials storage, clay mixing, glaze mixing, glazing and electric kiln firing . Large folding doors in the advanced classroom open onto the exterior kiln pad, which houses propane kilns and storage units for the raku and gaskiln furniture. 

Equipment includes:

3 Skutt 1027 electric kilns1 Skutt 1027 Kilnmaster kiln1L & L test kiln1 54 cu. ft. Geil downdraft car kiln1 18 cu. ft. Geil downdraft propane kiln1 16 cu. ft. Alpine updraft propane kiln1 portable fiber drum raku kiln19 Brent electric wheels2 Shimpo electric wheels

3 Leach-style kickwheels1 Soldner Professional clay mixer – 240 lb drum

1 Soldner Plaster Wheel 1 Highroller – Slab Roller2 North Star extruders (large and small)1 glaze spray booth (large)

1 Potterbot Clay Printer

1 Lehman Slip-O-Matic

8 ware carts

Fully Stocked Glaze/Clay Lab

Ventilation System

Peter Pugger Dearing Pug Mill

1 Mac Desktop Computer

Ball Mill

Bench Grinder

Visit our WCU Ceramics Facebook page.
Explore the Chancellor's visit to the Ceramics studio!

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