The art of ceramics has seen a surge in popularity over the last couple of years due to social media and programmes such as BBC’s The Great Pottery Throw Down. There is now the opportunity for anyone in Tayside to have a go and play with clay with the Dundee Ceramics Workshop.
As well as offering summer Fellowships to local artists looking for space to create ceramic work, and collaborating with local organisations – including Hot Chocolate Trust, Creative Dundee and NEoN Digital Arts Festival – to help introduce pottery to new audiences, volunteer-run Dundee Ceramics Workshop hopes that those without an arts background will also be keen to discover their inner potter. Committee volunteer Jen Collins notes “one of the best things about the workshop is the different people who come to make work here, from first-timers who want to try something new, to young artists using our facilities to develop their skills, to skilled potters sharing their knowledge with anyone who’s willing to give clay a go”.
Course tutors, Ian Henderson and Sarah Rychtarova, are key in making newcomers and experienced makers alike feel welcome in the space, with previous participants describing Ian as “very encouraging and full of information, advice and ideas”, and Sarah as “a fabulous teacher, very patient”. Artist Jill Skulina has found that clay has taken over her life after trying the Introductory course, whereas repeat Ceramics for All participant Lynda has “fallen totally in love with the amazing medium that is clay and will carry on bringing some new creations into the world”. Tutor Ian is also keen to share his craft with others in a bid to “keep ancient skills alive for the next generation”.
Dundee Ceramics Workshop has a wide range of upcoming classes that will have something to suit all skill levels. Those who want to master the basics or refine their knowledge can try a seven week Introduction to Ceramics, whilst anyone looking for a more relaxed environment to learn techniques or work on a personal project might like a four week Ceramics for All course. People who already have some classes under their belt can take their experience to the next level with an Intermediate course starting later this year.