Upcoming Events

Kim Ellington and the Twitter Whistle Cup he created for THE LAST DROP: INTOXICATING POTTERY, PAST AND PRESENT.  Read more...

Kim Ellington and the Twitter Whistle Cup he created for THE LAST DROP: INTOXICATING POTTERY, PAST AND PRESENT. Read more...

Clay Talks! with Kim Ellington
Thursday, February 1, 2018, 6:00-8:00 pm

Join us at the North Carolina Pottery Center on Thursday, February 1st, for a slide presentation by Catawba Valley potter Kim Ellington!

A Hickory native, Kim attended Haywood Community College’s pottery program before opening his first shop in Hickory in 1982. After the 1987 construction of a traditional groundhog kiln at Hart Square village, a local living history site, Kim moved his shop to Vale, the home of the Catawba Valley pottery tradition. Through his friendship with and guidance from Burlon Craig, the only potter working in the Catawba Valley tradition at the time, Kim adopted the use of local clay, alkaline glaze and wood firing to make his work.

According to Kim, the past influences his current work through the use of time-honored methods and materials specific to the Catawba Valley tradition. He adds, “I am also greatly influenced by the skill level and dedication to the use of local materials that has persisted locally for centuries. I do not attempt to replicate pots from the past. It is my objective to make relevant the forms, techniques, and materials of the Catawba Valley tradition to the present day and hopefully inspire others to carry them forward through their own interpretations and use.”

Kim is a featured artist in the Pottery Center’s current exhibition, The Last Drop: Intoxicating Pottery, Past and Present! For the exhibition, he reinterpreted a 1705 whistle cup from South Wiltshire, England, melding the Catawba Valley alkaline tradition with 21st-century references to opinions—both positive and negative—about alcohol’s use.

Kim’s talk will address his work, process and inspiration. A potluck at 6 pm will begin the evening’s events, followed by the presentation at 7 pm. Come out for a great night of food and community!

Location: The NCPC Educational Building located behind the NC Pottery Center at 233 East Avenue, Seagrove, 27341.


Chocolate + Wine for Your Valentine
Saturday, February 10, 2018, 1-3:30 pm
NCPC Members: $18 | Non-Members: $20

Calling all oenophiles and chocoholics – Love is in the air at the North Carolina Pottery Center! Join us on Saturday, February 10th for an afternoon of delicious wine and chocolate pairings in celebration of our newest exhibition, the groundbreaking The Last Drop: Intoxicating Pottery Past and Present!

During this event, attendees can tour the exhibition while enjoying four specially-selected pairings of wine and chocolate. This event makes for a great opportunity to take your loved one on an early Valentine’s Day date or to enjoy an afternoon out with friends.

All proceeds will benefit the North Carolina Pottery Center, a nonprofit organization focused on sharing North Carolina’s clay stories, past and present. We guarantee you’ll enjoy supporting North Carolina’s world class clay culture!

This event is $18 for NCPC members; $20 for non-members. A limited supply of wood-fired goblets created by the Pottery Center’s current Artist-in-Residence, Andrew Dutcher, will also be available for purchase.

Attendees must be of legal drinking age—alcohol will not be served to anyone under the age of 21.

Questions? Email membership@ncpotterycenter.org or call the Pottery Center at 336.873.8430.


Slipstravaganza: Historic Demonstration and Hands-On Workshop
Saturday, February 24, 2018  12:30-4:00 pm

Learn more about the fascinating history and art of slip-decorated pottery through this two-part Slipstravaganza at the North Carolina Pottery Center!

Historic Slip-Decorating Demonstration with Mary Farrell
12:30 – 1:45 pm

Mary Farrell of Westmoore Pottery is well known and respected for her fabulous slip-decorating skills, which she acquired over a 40+ year career in historical ceramics. In this free demonstration, she will recreate a jeweled and slip-trailed two-handled Staffordshire cup (ca. 1690) that is currently on display in NCPC’s exhibition, "The Last Drop: Intoxicating Pottery, Past and Present." This event is free and open to the public.

Slip-Decorating Workshop with Andrew Dutcher:
Decorate your own tumber!
$20 for NCPC members; $25 for non-members
2:00-4:00 pm

After being inspired by Mary Farrell’s demonstration, join us in a hands-on workshop to give slip-trailing a try!

One of the Pottery Center’s current Artists-in-Residence, Andrew Dutcher, will lead participants in a beginner’s slip-trailing class. Each participant will have the opportunity to decorate a hand-thrown tumbler using slip-trailing techniques in a trio of colors. You can decorate your tumbler in a historically-based pattern or create your own unique design!

Cost for this workshop is $20 for NCPC members; $25 for non-members. You can decorate additional tumblers for $10 apiece. Cost includes all instructions, materials, and firings.

Space is limited, so register early! To register, email membership@ncpotterycenter.org or call the Pottery Center at 336.873.8430

About Westmoore Pottery
Westmoore Pottery was founded in 1977 by potters David and Mary Farrell in the Westmoore community near Seagrove, North Carolina. Westmoore Pottery focuses on creating historically accurate pottery as it would have been made and decorated in North Carolina between 1755 and 1850. Mary says, "I am inspired by the past to make pottery enjoyed now and in the future."

Westmoore Pottery's work has been used by over 120 museums and living history sites and has been used in a number of films. In 2010, the North Carolina Society of Historians presented Westmoore Pottery with the Barringer Award of Excellence in recognition of its work with historical pottery.

About Andrew Dutcher
A graduate of Warren Wilson College in ceramics, Andrew Dutcher served an apprenticeship with Seagrove potter Daniel Johnston from 2014-2017. Andrew has also completed residencies at several clay centers, including Pocosin Arts, the Odyssey Center, and most recently, the Archie Bray Foundation in Helena, Montana. While at the Bray, Andrew constructed a large installation piece and explored North Carolina's slipware traditions. He plans to continue to pursue these areas of interest further and developing reliable slips and glazes as well as a line of saleable work.

Michelle Erickson (Photograph by Rob Hunter)

Michelle Erickson (Photograph by Rob Hunter)

Open House & Clay Talks! w/ Michelle Erickson
Sunday, March 4, 1:00-4:00 pm

In conjunction with the end of the North Carolina Potters Conference in Asheboro, NC, we hope you’ll join us for an Open House and slide presentation by Virginia-based artist Michelle Erickson at the North Carolina Pottery Center from 1:00-4:00 pm on Sunday, March 4th! 

Michelle is internationally recognized for her mastery of colonial-era ceramic techniques and using those techniques to create pieces that explore 21st-century social, political, and environmental themes. Her pieces are in the collections of major museums, including Colonial Williamsburg, the Seattle Art Museum, London’s Victoria and Albert Museum, and the Potteries Museum in Stoke-on-Trent, England.

Using historic ceramic techniques, Michelle creates works of art that make statements about our contemporary world. As she puts it, “I make objects of the past from an imagined future in the present.” Michelle’s work draws parallels through time, such as the 18th-century Staffordshire pottery industry and global design giant Nike, Wedgwood’s abolitionist ceramics and contemporary child slavery, the colonial discovery and obsession with fossils as prescient to our perilous addiction to fossil fuels.

Michelle’s presentation (from 2:00-3:00 pm) is part of the programming associated with the Pottery Center’s landmark exhibition, The Last Drop: Intoxicating Pottery, Past and Present, currently on view through April 7, 2018. Michelle’s solo section of the exhibition, titled “Michelle Erickson: Distilled,” features 11 of Erickson’s pieces and, through photos and videos, showcases her use of lost ceramic techniques. 

In the Pale Moonlight, another section of the The Last Drop exhibition, focuses on alcohol-related ceramics of 19th and early 20th century North Carolina. The Last Drop is a collaboration with the Chipstone Foundation, a Milwaukee-based foundation devoted to promoting the study of American material culture and the decorative arts.

More About The Last Drop: Intoxicating Pottery, Past and Present:

For thousands of years, potters have fashioned clay vessels for the ritual consumption of fermented and distilled beverages. These vessels not only reflect the technological and stylistic concerns of their time and place, but also a wide variety of cultural celebrations as well as proscriptions related to the making, distribution, ceremonial usage, and consumption of alcoholic drinks.

For The Last Drop, the Pottery Center invited fifteen leading contemporary potters, both local and nationally recognized, to create new ceramic work that was inspired by 17th or 18th-century drinking vessels from the Chipstone Foundation's exemplary collection. The fifteen artists reinterpreted their assigned piece, creating a new one that reflected both the maker’s artistic style, along with their ideas and attitudes concerning alcohol.
While most of our Clay Talks! are potlucks, this particular event is not. Light refreshments will be available courtesy of the Pottery Center starting at 1:30 pm.

This presentation is free and open to the public. Location: North Carolina Pottery Center, 233 East Avenue, Seagrove, 27341.

Past Events

  • Saturday, Dec. 9, 2017, from 4-7:30 PM
    Opening Reception with a presentation by Robert Hunter, guest curator.