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A ceramist throwing a pot on the wheel.

The Expressive Vessel: An Immersive Introduction to Clay

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Course Description

Students will learn to make and to analyze functional ceramic forms, with a focus on wheel-thrown pottery.  Studio time will be dedicated to the acquisition and refinement of shaping, marking/glazing and finishing skills; supplementary lectures and discussions will be used to explore the aesthetic range of contemporary studio ceramics as well as major historical traditions in clay.  No prior experience is necessary, but instructors will work individually with students at all levels of ability to make this Arts Intensive experience both challenging and rewarding.  Each student will produce functional ware (e.g. dishes, cups, vases, et cetera) suitable for use and display and will give a final class presentation on a selection of their most personally expressive work.

This class will take place in Elliot Program Center in collaboration with the Stanford Ceramics Club.

This course fulfills the Creative Expression (CE) requirement.

Meet the Instructor(s)

Deardra Fuzzell

Deardra Fuzzell

Deardra Fuzzell is the Cartographic Technology Specialist for Stanford Libraries, where she coordinates the digitization of maps and oversized materials for Stanford. With the 2016 opening of the David Rumsey Map Center, she has taken on additional roles supporting their programming, collections, and technology. She holds a B.A. in Studio Art with a focus on Sculpture and Ceramics from The College of Wooster in Northeast Ohio. Deardra has been making ceramic work for 17 years and has been teaching techniques in clay for 12 years. Her practice focuses mainly on thrown and altered sculptural forms evocative of germination and growth and she is fascinated by alternative firing techniques such as pit firing and sawdust firing. She lives in Palo Alto.

  1. Ceramic objects created by students in the Expressive Vessel course.
  2. Students reviewing objects during the Expressive Vessel course.
  3. Instructor Deardra Fuzzell leads a raku firing in the Expressive Vessel course.