Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Meet a master of clay

Seattle artist Deborah Schwartzkopf to conduct weekend workshop

Express Staff Writer

Artist Deborah Schwartzkopf gives a demonstration at Snow Farm in western Massachu-setts. Courtesy photo

A three-day clay workshop will be conducted in Ketchum this weekend by Deborah Schwartzkopf, a Seattle-based clay artist who recently was one of four artists to give work-shops at the annual convention of the National Council on Education for the Ceramic Arts. Schwartzkopf's workshop will be held June 10-12 at the Boulder Mountain Clayworks Studio, at 710 Tenth St., Unit 5B.

The Seattle Times wrote of Schwartzkopf's work that she "builds porcelain forms whose defining lines and soft planes are geometric and sensual, ele-gant and animated and archi-tectural and organic."

Schwartzkopf says of her own work: "In the conception of form, I strive for the emotion and energy of a full and swel-ling curve, and for the expec-tancy of an opening apple blos-som. I see these curves re-peated in a full sail made taut with directional wind and in the softness of the human body filling anew with each breath. I want to evoke emotion through association to shape and color and communicate a formal re-lationship between organic motion and geometry."

She is a Seattle native who has traveled the world exten-sively and recently returned home.

"The Northwest is gor-geous," she said. "I feel home when I see Mount Rainier looming in the distance. It feels good to be home."

Schwartzkopf received her bachelor of arts degree from the University of Alaska in An-chorage and has a master's of fine arts degree from Pennsyl-vania State University. She has studied and worked in Califor-nia, Maine, Montana, Alaska and Ohio, as well as in China and several countries in Europe. In 2007-2008 she was a visiting assistant professor at the Ohio University ceramics program. She is currently an artist in residence and instruc-tor at Pottery Northwest in Se-attle.

The workshop will begin Friday, June 10, at 4 p.m. and will include a free lecture by the artist, open to the public, at 6 p.m. The lecture will focus on Schwartzkopf's work as an art-ist in the Northwest and the state of clay art. Wine and cheese will be served after the lecture.

Saturday will be demonstra-tion day with hands-on work by workshop participants. On Sunday, Schwartzkopf will talk about glazing techniques and, if time permits, offer critiques.

Tuition for the workshop is $250 and a partial scholarship is available. For information about the workshop, call 726-4484 or email

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