Beginner Wheel & Mug Making


Adult Class

6 Sessions


Instructor: Jake Harnish

This class is an introduction to wheel thrown pottery. Learn the basics of throwing, forming, handles, and finishing pieces trimming and glazing. Create several functional pieces, with special focus on 'the mug'. Beginners welcome! Tuition includes materials and firing costs, as well as open studio access during the weeks of your class. Additional clay is sold separately at $30/25lb bag.


Instructor Bio:

Jake moved to Johnson, VT where he studied Fine Arts in 2013. He is a multi-media artist focusing mostly in clay. His work includes thrown and sculpted forms, mixing traditional techniques and experimentation in his throwing. Beyond clay he also works with paint and is an avid gardener. Before graduating Jake hosted his thesis gallery show “From the Dirt”, which led to three more art shows in his recent career: at the Vermont Studio Center, “Intergalactic" & “Paintings that are Hard to Move”, as well as “Earth Like” at the White Water Gallery in Hardwick, VT.
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Sip n’ Slurry – Pottery Friday Nights

$18 per session or $45 for series + cash bar


Sign up for fun pottery nights! This summer, every 1st Friday in June, July, and August, River Arts will host a Sip n' Slurry creative experience. Clay Studio instructors will walk you through a simple handbuilding project, all while enjoying a glass of wine or locally brewed beer. Handbuilidng is a great introductory method of working with clay, no prior experience is required (pottery wheel not used in this class as it requires more than one class to complete work).

Students will make 2 - 3 pieces during this 2 hour class, such as a bowl, plate, mug, or decorative piece. Couples and groups encourages, bring some friends and make it a party!

Includes materials, pieces will be available to pickup after glazing and firing approximately 3 weeks later.

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FULL – Afterschool Class: Meditating on Form; Intro to Throwing


Ages 8-18

5 Sessions

Currently on waitlist

  Developing skill in throwing takes patience and dedication. This beginning ceramics class will focus on gaining skill on the wheel and attempting to make multiples of a single form. With time devoted to using pattern and surface design to unite pieces, students will both develop their muscle memory of throwing and working with clay. Looking at ceramic works throughout history, students will leave with a better understanding of functional wheel-thrown ceramics.

Out-of-class work time will be available through private lesson or during RiverArt’s All Ages Thursday Evening class. Students can expect help with managing their work in between classes, as the Instructor will assist in wrapping, misting or unwrapping wet pieces for success in the studio. Students will be able to draw from communal clay supply during scheduled classes, though bags of clay will be available for purchase for independent studio projects.

Instructor Bio: Lisa Wolfgang is an interdisciplinary artist who has been living and working in Vermont since 2016. Since graduating from Alfred University with her BFA in Sculpture and Expanded Media, Lisa has worked in wide variety of fields attempting to understand better what it means to live and make in a time of environmental crisis. In her work, Lisa calls for a solution to these pressing dilemmas through interactive, tactile, and often emotional installations which set the scene to examined our connections between one another and our lives in this world. Her experience as an educator ranges in subject matter and setting as she has frequently found herself interfacing with people through education as a means to build positive connection. Her background includes work as an instructor of sculpture and ceramics at the Helen Day Arts Center, as a instructor of ceramics and as a studio technician at the Interlochen Center for the Arts, as an outdoor educator at the Battle Creek Outdoor Education Center, and as the kid’s tent coordinator for four seasons at HollerFest, a three day music festival. Lisa joined the clay studio this past fall and is looking forward to making more connections at RiverArts as she begins teaching beginning and intermediate ceramics classes.
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Clay Studio at River Arts

The Clay Studio at River Arts offers 4 pottery wheels, electric kiln, hand tools, glazes, and three clay bodies. Laguna Cone 6 stoneware clay bodies available including white, white with grog, and red with grog at $30 per 25lb bag, which includes all glazing and firing costs. Clay must be purchased through RA. Members may contact clay studio manager to approve bringing in additional materials or glazes.

Monthly Memberships:


Work independently in the studio

Dedicated shelf space for work, clay, and supplies storage

Unlimited studio hours, except for blacked-out dates for classes and rentals

Access to building key-code for coming in on Saturdays and evenings beyond office hours

Punch Cards:

$50/5 punches

$100/12 punches

Punch Cards are good for either independent studio time or attending Ongoing Drop-In Thursday Class if you need assistance. Each punch good for 1 day in studio for as long as you want. Sign-up recommended as there is limited wheel space. Sign-up on sheet in the studio, by calling the office (802-888-1261), or emailing [email protected] Drop-ins welcome based on availability.
Ongoing Mixed-Level Class:

-Thursdays with Heidi Bielenberg, 6-8pm. All ages!

Instructor will assist you in your learning from beginning throwing, honing your skills, trimming, hand building, and glazing. Classes do not have a set start and end date, purchase a punch card and attend classes or independent studio time as able. Reserve a space in advance recommended, drop-ins welcome based on availability. Sign-up by calling the office at (802) 888-1261, or emailing [email protected]
2-hour Private Lessons:

$75 for 1 person

$100 for 2 people

$125 for 3 people

$150 for 4 people

Book a 2 hour private lesson! All materials included. We encourage you to sign up for multiple dates if you would like to learn how to trim and glaze your piece, otherwise we will take care of the finish work and you can pick up your piece approx 2 weeks after lesson. Give us a call or email [email protected] for more information or to reserve your date!
Questions? Interested in teaching or becoming a studio assistant?

Contact Heidi Bielenberg, Clay Studio Manager at [email protected]
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