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Uptown Clay – Spring Open House and Ceramics Sale

The artists are all working hard getting work ready for the spring Open House Event.  Mark your calendars;  Saturday April 29th from 12:00-6:00 PM.  We will have some great new work from all the artists in addition to new work from some of our new studio mates; Rocky, Jen and Sam. Stop by for a quick snack, or ride your bikes down the Midtown Greenway and exit at the Soo Line Gardens and stop by and see us!

All of our pottery is made locally by artists who live and work in the Uptown community.  This is truly shopping local!

Rock Johnson showing at Conception Arts, first Chicago show

We’re so proud of Rocky! He was invited to show his work in Chicago at the first Conception Arts shows there.  This show features the work of 25 artists that are on the cutting edge of visual arts. The show will be taking place on June 24th, 2017 at the Dovetail Brewery, 1800 West Belle Plaine Avenue from 5:00 pm -10:00 pm. Good luck Rocky. Chicago is going to be blown away by your new work.  Tickets available through Rocky or online here.


Rocky Johnson, mid-fire clay, slip decorated, 2017


Rocky Johnson, mid-fire clay, slip decorated, 2017

Rock Johnson, ceramics, pottery, Uptown Clay, shop local,

Rocky Johnson, mid-fire clay, slip decorated, 2017

Roadside Attractions—Next 5 Exits, Exhibition Opening and Artists Talks at Northern Clay Center


Patty Chambers

“It is good to have an end to journey toward; but it is the journey that matters, in the end.”
—Ernest Hemingway

Mar 10 to Apr 30

Opening reception: Friday, March 10, 6 – 8 pm

Guest-curated by Pattie Chalmers, Roadside Attractions — Next 5 Exits reveals a vision of the allure of the wayside through the work of five artists. These artists—Chalmers, Jeremy Kane, Peter Morgan, Mariko Paterson, and Nathan Prouty—create works that depict the recollection of travels, a portrayal of collected memories, nostalgia for past Americana, and the desire to contain an experience within an object. Viewers will recognize the expression of journeys made and imagined, and they will be able to connect through their shared experience.


Patty Chambers

Related Events

Northern Clay is sponsoring a public artist talk by curator and participating artist Pattie Chalmers, and artist Peter Morgan, on Thursday, March 9 at 6 pm in NCC’s library. Register for your free seat here.

In addition, Peter Morgan will demonstrate on Saturday, March 11, from 10 am – 4 pm. Register for your free seat here.


Clair de Loon –  Peter Chambers

Mariko Paterson will join us for a free workshop and slide lecture during the closing week of the exhibition on Saturday, April 22, from 10 am – 4 pm. She will present her techniques and discuss her work. Register for your free seat here.

All of these educational events are free and open to the public. Due to limited seating for all events, pre-registration is encouraged.


Klondike Bear – Peter Morgan

American ‘Holy Grail’ Porcelain Punch Bowl to Go on Display

Ceramics, pottery, Uptown Clay, Shop local, Handcrafted pottery,
This bowl dates from about 1770 and is the earliest known example of American hard-paste porcelain. It will be at the Museum of the American Revolution, which is to open in Philadelphia on April 19.

Who would have thought that the story of porcelain would be such a rousing tale of wealth, intrigue and outrageous greed and gluttony?  In spite of porcelain being used in China for hundreds of years, it’s formula was a closely guarded secret by the Chinese. Recently arrived from the Orient to 17th century Europe, porcelain quickly became a symbol of power, prestige, and good taste. Porcelain by weight was worth as much as gold in many parts of Europe in the 18th century. A colonial-era, porcelain, American made, punch bowl that has been called the “Holy Grail” of American ceramics is to go on public display for the first time in Philadelphia in April after its discovery during excavation on the site of the new Museum of the American Revolution.

The ceramic bowl, dating from about 1770, is the earliest known example of American hard-paste porcelain, a technique that was perfected by the Chinese hundreds of years earlier but which eluded European china makers. Although scholars have found documents indicating that the porcelain was made in America during the Revolutionary period, no such objects had previously been discovered.

“It’s the first physical evidence of what we call hard-paste porcelain being produced in America,” said Robert Hunter, an archaeologist and the editor of the journal Ceramics in America. “I’ve used the term ‘Holy Grail of American ceramics.’”

The bowl was found in 2014 among some 85,000 other items on the museum site. It was initially thought to be stoneware but later determined to be porcelain that was probably made in Philadelphia.

Read More

Check out this interesting read on the history of Porcelain.

Kingfield Empty Bowls, Thursday February 9th, 4-8 P.M. Martin Luther King Park

empty_bowlsOn Thursday, February 9th, from 4-8 PM Kingfield will host the sixth annual Kingfield Empty Bowls! Empty Bowls is a single day event that combines art, food, local businesses, nonprofits, and lots and lots of neighbors raising awareness and funds to combat hunger in our neighborhood. Your support of this project will again benefit Nicollet Square, an organization that provides affordable housing and a supportive environment for young adults who have experienced homelessness or have been in the foster care system. Last year we were able to donate over $10,000 to Nicollet Square through this single evening event!

The concept of Kingfield Empty Bowls is simple: Attendees donate (suggested at $20 per bowl), select a beautiful handmade bowl donated by a local pottery artist, enjoy a hearty meal of soup prepared by volunteers, and then keep their bowl as a reminder that many of our neighbors need food and housing.

For more info and to share info with your friends and neighbors, visit and join the Facebook Event at

Imperial Chinese Teapot Sells for 3.5 Million at Auction

Ceramics, Pottery, Uptown Clay, Chinese ceramics

An 18th-century teapot sold at Sotheby’s for $3.5 million with fees.

Back in September, this Chinese teapot was one of the star lots in Sotheby’s biannual “Asia Week” auctions when it sold for $3.5 million dollars of the sales total $60.4 million.

Brexit, the U.S. presidential election and general macroeconomic jitters might have cooled demand for European and American art, but the market for historic Chinese artifacts seems to be warming up again – at least at auction.  In the case of the 18th-century famille-rose “Hui Mountain Retreat” teapot, more than half a dozen bidders competed before it was bought by an Asian collector.

Finely painted with a scene of tea being served in a garden, it bore a poem by the Qianlong emperor celebrating his fondness for the brew. The pot had been owned by the renowned American collector Murrell Rickards Bowden Werth, who died in 2014. Things with an imperial connection have real pulling-power for the Chinese,” Mr. Howard-Sneyd of Sotheby’s said. “And if it has been in a Western collection 30 or more years, it can’t be a recent fake, which gives them confidence.

Ceramics, pottery, Uptown Clay, shop local

A Kangxi vase from the Metropolitan Museum of Art sold for $2 million. Credit Christie’s Images

Later that day Christie’s offered 204 lots of Chinese ceramics that American collectors had gifted over the last 100 years or so to the Metropolitan Museum of Art. Museum deaccessions can be controversial, but the Met made it clear that the works being offered were mainly duplicates unlikely to be ever displayed and that the money raised would be used to fund other purchases.

The prestige of the Met provenance proved irresistible. All the lots sold, raising $12.1 million against a low estimate of $3.5 million. A Kangxi period (1662-1722) peach bloom-glazed vase topped the auction at $2 million, more than double its high estimate, while a blue and white jar of the same period — of a common type that dealers struggle to sell for $2,000 — took $20,000.

Those peach bloom vases were made in eight shapes in the Kangxi period,” said James Lally, a specialist dealer in historic Chinese art based in New York, adding that they were popular in the United States at the turn of the century. “The Met had 108 of them.”