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The Clay Place


UVA’s Clay Place is the Umpqua Valley’s only educational clay studio. The Clay Place offers clay classes for all ages and abilities in a high-quality professional studio environment. It also offers open studio time and facilities for more experienced ceramic artists needing a place to work, share ideas, and expand their skills.

The Clay Place will be re-opening in the Fall 2020 semester, which will run from September 30 to November 24. We are currently full. Because of the need for social distancing, the Clay Place will operate with a limited occupancy during the Fall 2020 semester. Registrants will sign up for studio hours allotted based on their registration level (10-Pack or Full Pack). 

This community studio has everything you need to make clay art including kick and electric wheels, a slab roller, a pugmill, glazes, and electric kilns and raku kilns. Professional clay artist Ted Isto leads the classes and is available to students for personalized instruction and support. 

We look forward to welcoming you to our new and improved space on September 30, for the beginning of the Fall semester! 

Hours for Enrolled Students: Fall 2020

Mondays: Open Studio, 10am-2pm

Tuesdays: Open Studio, 10:30am-2:30pm

Wednesdays: Open Studio, 3pm-5pm, and Instruction, 5pm-7pm

Thursdays: Open Studio, 11am-3pm

Fridays: Open Studio, 3pm-5pm, and Instruction, 5pm-7pm

The Clay Pod

The Clay Pod is the Clay Place’s very own podcast, focused on ceramics in the Umpqua Valley Region and the Pacific Northwest more broadly.

Episode 1: Ash Glazes with Clay Place Instructor Ted Isto

Episode 2: Ceramics and Bonsai with Artist Sam Rogers

Episode 3: Water and Vinegar in Clay and Glazes with Clay Place Instructor Ted Isto

Term Weekly Themes

Each term offers weekly instructional themes allowing students to build upon and develop their skills at their own pace with high-quality instruction and support.

Week 1: Class begins on Wednesday. History of ceramics and ceramic materials. Hand built pots and primitive ceramics. Coils, pinch pots, soft slab bowls and the physics and chemistry of clay.

Week 2: Soft slab mugs, joining leather-hard slabs, hump molds, tiles, surface and texture

Week 3: Kick and electric wheel throwing; cylinders and underglazes

Week 4: Kick and electric wheel throwing; bowls; glaze theory and application

Week 5: Kick and electric wheel throwing; plates and glazes on pots

Week 6: More glazing, stains, oxide painting and larger pots

Week 7: Extruder, molds, coil and throw techniques and more surface decoration

Week 8: Glazes, spraying and pouring; kilns, furniture, loading and firing. Tricks and tools; molds and extruder pots, fast things

How to Register

The Clay Place operates five terms a year in an Open Studio model with students selecting a Full-Pack or 10-Pack registration each term.

Recommended for beginner students. A Full Pack entitles the student to 35 blocks of studio time (for a total of 70 hours of studio use in a semester). Because of social distancing requirements, we have a limited number of Full-Packs available.

$215 (UVA Members)
$235 (non-UVA Members)

This level is recommended for experienced ceramics artists looking for studio time. The 10-Pack entitles the registrant to 10 blocks of studio time (for a total of 20 hours of studio use).

$125 (UVA Members)
$135 (non-UVA Members)

Thank You: The Clay Place community would like to warmly thank the following organizations and individuals for their contributions to our newly renovated space: the Dr. John Wm. and Betty Long Unruh Fund, Centerpointe Home Improvement, Manfre Design Source, Triple Oak Winery, the UVA Building Committee (with special thanks to Betty Tamm, Board Treasurer & Building Committee Chair, and Betti Manfre, Board Member & Building Committee Member),  the Clay Place Volunteers (with a special thanks to Sam Reitenbaugh for leading the volunteer clean-up and painting team, and to Bruce Gravens, for shelving), and UVA staff members Sandee McGee and Raino Isto. 

Payment and Refund Policy: Full payment at time of registration is required. Full refunds will be made in the event that the UVA has to cancel the event (workshop, class, Clay Place term, special program). Please be aware, should you need to cancel or change your registration 75% of your registration fee will be refunded up until two weeks prior to the start of the event. Cancellations made within two weeks of an event will be given a refund of 50% of the registration of the event. We are unable to refund registration fees on the day of or any days following the start of the event.