Ceramic Art Practices: Exploring the Role of the Object

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Fall 2017 quarter

Taught by

ceramic art, sculpture, visual studies

This studio arts program examines the role of the object in art history and contemporary artistic practice. Students will learn both sculptural and functional approaches to making ceramic artworks while combining 2- and 3-D ceramics techniques. This program is designed for beginner to intermediate students with little or no experience with ceramics and art history. Our introductory thematic focus will be on the “still life” object: how objects reflect and represent us, embodying our tastes, values, hopes, and identities. Through lectures, readings, seminars, and critiques, we will explore how humans have historically used inanimate objects to represent religious, allegorical, personal and political ideas, and how these objects and symbols impact our culture today. Through our own creative projects, we will explore the relationship between image and object and the role of the object in contemporary art.

Students will have opportunities to develop technical skills in ceramic forming, glazing, and firing techniques while learning about the history of ceramics. Each student in the program will create a series of creative works related to the object over the course of the quarter. This program is designed for students who have a strong work ethic, self-discipline, and who are willing to work long hours on campus in the ceramics studio.  It is ideal for students who have some visual art experience in any medium and would like to apply their previous experience to making 2- and 3-D ceramics functional and sculptural clay pieces. Students who fully engage in the theory and practice of this program can expect to leave the program prepared for more intermediate to advanced studies in the visual arts.

Program Details

Fields of Study

aesthetics art history cultural studies visual arts

Preparatory For

visual arts, arts education, art history, and arts management.


Fall Open

Location and Schedule

Campus Location


Time Offered


Advertised Schedule

First class meeting: Tuesday, September 26 at 10am (Arts Annex 2104)

Online Learning

Enhanced Online Learning


$80 for admission to museums and for ceramics supplies.


2017-01-18New fall opportunity added.