Workshop Calendar

Ancient Pottery with Bob Casias / Starts September 1st, 2012 (two weekends)

Ancient Pottery with Bob Casias / Starts September 1st, 2012 (two weekends)


Students will learn to make a coiled pot, apply white clay to exterior, polish exterior, paint a design with organic paint and fire the final piece in a traditional trench Kiln.

About the Pottery and Contemporary Potters such as Bob Casias:

All the pottery produced today by Bob Casias follows the tradition of the ancients in that tools such as gourd scrapers, polishing stones, and yucca fiber paint brushes are employed throughout the hand-building of all pieces. The clays used are mined by hand and taken from an area near present-day Cortez Colorado. A high gloss is achieved on the surface of the pottery by burnishing the surface of each piece with a smooth polishing stone. The organic paint, used to apply designs emulating those found in the archeological record, is produced by boiling the leaves and seeds of the Rocky Mountain Bee plant. The paint is applied to the pottery using a fine strand of yucca plant fiber. The pottery is dried and placed in a trench kiln for approximately two hours and during the firing process carbon produced within the fire impregnates the white montmorillonite clay, leaving the black designs contrasted against the white clay to produce the hallmark of black-on-white pottery. Bob has been producing replicas of the Ancient Puebloan’s pottery for the past ten years.

Bob Casias was born in Pueblo, Colorado and attended the University of Colorado, where he earned his degree in Anthropology and Sociology. During two separate excavation seasons beginning in 1980, Bob took graduate courses and studied under Dr. David Breternitz, while attending field school and working on the Dolores Archeological Project, near Cortez, Colorado. As a potter and student of ancient southwest cultures, it was quite fortunate to be under the tutelage of one of the southwest’s leading archeologists and ceramics experts, as is Dr. Breternitz. During these two seasons Bob participated in excavations of Pueblo I, II, and III villages and was able to see, and actually hold, some very fine examples of Mesa Verde Black-on-White pottery.

The workshop will be held at the Tarnoff Art Center located in Rowe New Mexico. Students (8) will have full access to the studio facility while attending the workshop. Suggestions can be made for reasonable lodging, and Santa Fe has plenty of rooms available although the city is about 20 minutes away.

The daily schedule will consist of instruction from 8:00-12:00, lunch from 12:00-1:00 and continued pot building, polishing and painting again from 1:00-4:00. We will fire the following weekend Sept 8-9.

When: September 1-2, 8-9 trench firing, 2012

Where: Tarnoff Art Center, 4 Wildflower lane, Rowe, NM 87562

Time: 8AM-4PM Sat & Sun (2 weekends)

Cost: $255, all materials included *Space is limited to 8 Students, we reserve spaces on a first come first serve basis. Payment is due in full at time of reservation.

Phone: 1-505-919-8888

Website/Blog Address:

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