Kiln Building Workshop with Markus Boehm, School of Art, U of Manitoba, June 21-30

The School of Art at the University of Manitoba is hosting a Bourry box kiln building workshop with Markus Boehm from June 21-30.  It will be a one cubic metre kiln and participants are asked to bring pieces for the firing.  The fee is $325.  Spaces are limited and are on a first come basis.   Please e-mail me of your interest:


Markus Boehm lives in Alt Gaarz, Germany where he has his studio and a sales shop and gallery.  In 1989 he passed the rigorous state examinations of the GDR to receive his master potters certification.  Boehm was the driving force behind the First European Wood Fire Conference in Brollin, Germany in 2010, an event that was so successful it spread to Denmark for 2014 and to France for August 2018.


Ceramics Club students at School of Art ready for their spring sale

For all of you who regularly attend the Ceramics Club spring sale and those of you who haven’t (you really should), they will be having their spring sale in the University of Manitoba Student Union on April 5-6.  Hours are normally 9:30-4.  If I hear different, I will let you know.

The featured image for today’s blog is one of those students, Bobby Young, and his Japanese breakfast set assignment.  He is a young man to keep your eyes on!

Date for Markus Boehm’s kiln building workshop has been set

The date for the Bourry Box kiln (with an extended throat for anagama effects) workshop will take place at the School of Art, University of Manitoba from June 21-30th.  The days will be packed solid, from morning to night.  You will learn everything you need to know about building a wood-fuelled kiln and more.  There will also be an opportunity for you to fire some of your work in our kiln (small pieces and number TBD).  The fee for the workshop is still TBD but I should know next week and how you can pay.  Space is limited to ten individuals!

Open Call Women of Colour

Noor Bhangu has curated a final exhibition as part of her internship at the School of Art Gallery.  The title womenofcolour@soagallery is a direct reflection of the representation of women artists in the School’s collection, only 5.6%, and the lack entirely of art by women of colour.  Bhangu’s response has been to put out an Open Call for artwork submissions.  All QTBIPOC women artists are invited to submit work.  All work submitted until the final date, April 13, will be accepted and included in the exhibition.  YOU DO NOT HAVE TO BE AFFILIATED WITH THE UNIVERSITY!

How to apply:  Email Noor Bhangu at with an expression of interest, including an image of your work if available, your name, the title, the year, the medium and the dimensions.  Drop off of work begins at the School of Art Gallery between 10-4 from Monday to Friday starting February 26 (already passed) and April 13.  You must contact Noor regarding drop off times.  Arrangements can be made for some work to be picked up on Monday, April 19.

There will be a panel discussion, TBA on March 22 and a closing reception on April 12 TBA.  Stay tuned.  I will post that information.

I know many of you in the Winnipeg community and I knew those reading this know others – please spread the word!

You know those days when you feel like you should buy a lottery ticket? Today feels like that for me. I want to share some upcoming events that are so ‘hot’ they don’t have confirmed dates yet.

The first is news of a really big event.  The last two weeks of June, Master Potter Markus Boehm from Germany will be with us.  For years I have been advocating for a wood kiln that was for the students, one that could be fired by a single person achieving the level of ash that would put a smile on your face without using so much wood and without having to be fired for 46 hours.  Well, we are going to build it!  A state of the art smokeless Bourry Box kiln that will reach cone 14 in 14 hours using only two cubic metres of hardwood logs.  Honestly, you can knit a sweater while firing this kiln.  Good for one person, great for a group, too.   I will be putting out the call for 10 workshop participants.    It will be 10 days and will include a firing.  I need individuals who are keen to learn how to put German engineering into wood kiln design and who are not afraid of long days, sweating, learning a heck of a lot, and walking away with some nice wood fired pieces.  Final dates and workshop costs will be forthcoming.

Bob Archambeau has been with the School of Art for 50 Years.  In the late fall, the School of Art Gallery at the University of Manitoba will be holding a retrospective of Archambeau and his work.  I will be curating this special exhibition and will be looking for work of Bob’s dating from 1968 to 2008 as well as historic photographs and great stories about Bob as a teacher and potter to go into the catalogue.  Stay tuned as Paul Hess and I work towards finalizing dates.

Ceramics Club at the University of Manitoba will be holding their spring sale in mid-April.  Watch this site for dates and times.

And two articles of mine were published.  One features Joo Young Han (Grace Han), Onnghi Master and recent MFA graduate from the School and is in the latest edition of New Ceramics (Neue Keramik) and Markus Boehm:  East German Master Potter Adapts to Changes since the fall of the wall in Ceramics:  Art and Perception.  Also, Grace Han will be featured on a short documentary by the CBC.  I will try to get the dates and times it will be shown.  Congratulations Grace!


Annual Ceramics Sale in Yamashina

If you are thinking about being in Japan – in or near Kyoto – during the third weekend of October, seriously consider going to the annual ceramics sale that takes place in Yamashina.

The kilns used to be up Dojo-dori along the mountain.  You will know this if you have stepped into Kawaii Kanjiro’s house and studio near Kiyomizu-dera.  But the smoke sent the big kilns out into the countryside, not far, in Yamashina.  The third weekend of October every year has hundreds of shops and stalls open to the public.  Free transportation is provided.  Just ask at the JR Station on how to find it.  You can wander for an entire day.  If you plan to buy, take some strong tote bags with you and an extra suitcase!  Leave the suitcase in your hotel.  There are food stalls and places to even make a pot if you desire.

The work is excellent and much is reasonably priced.  This is why I mention the extra suitcase.  You might also want to consider bubble wrap.  Take a small piece and go into the nearest office supply or yen store and show them the sample.  They will come running back with a roll.  Remember packing tape.  Wrap so you can toss it like a baseball, insert into the luggage so it can’t roll around or bag against something else and there you have it – the beginning of your obsession to be there every year!  I should mention that if you are lucky, it is also leaf changing season.  There is no better place to be!



Can you? or someone you know help me locate these potters (former potters?)? I do not know if they fit my research profile but they were Americans working in clay during the era.

I am trying to find word of the following individuals.  They were Americans who came to Canada.  I have not been able to locate them so any assistance would help.  Please ask them to contact me at my university address.  It is: They are:

Bonita Collins.  She gave pottery classes in Toronto and might be able to connect me with some who came up.  Known also as Bonita Bocanegra Collins.  Someone thinks she might be in southern Ontario being a food designer?

Lee Danish.  Was in New Brunswick.

Mardi Demain.  Also in New Brunswick at one time.  Rumours are he went to work on a math project with his won at either Yale or Harvard.

Leah Errington.  In 1983 was running Great CDN Design Works in North Vancouver.  Supplied slip products along with the late Jim Meadows.

Ludmina Evans

Carol Graham.  Deceased.   Got her MFA from Puget Sound.  Taught at Malaspina.  In 1983 was living in Cobble Hill, BC.  Can anyone tell me about her work and provide images?

Rick Hanbury.  Deceased.  Had a studio in Nelson.  Can anyone tell me about his work and provide some historical images?

Desi Kantrum.  In 1983 was part of the Arrow Lakes Pottery group.

Jane Schlossberg

Pete Scott.  Pete is remembered by lots of folks including Byron Johnstad and Roger Painter.  Part of the Vancouver scene.  Returned to the US.  We believe he is working in the mountains and selling work in the Pacific Northwest.  Any images, news, etc. would be most welcome.

Norman White.  In 1983 was in Slocan Park, BC.  Deceased???  Anyone know of Norman and his work?