Ongoing, Multi-Week Workshops

Ceramic Sculpture: Expressive Vessels, Forms, and Environments

Wednesdays or Thursdays starting April 24 or 25, and June 5 or 6 (four- or six-week courses)
10 am–1 pm (plus optional studio time 1–5 pm)

Create unique vessels and sculptures for your home or garden in this six-week course. Sessions will introduce new techniques, projects, and concepts inspired by deCordova New England Biennial 2019 and installations in the Sculpture Park.

Workshop includes:

  • Three weekly hours of demonstration and instruction in developing ceramic sculpture techniques and meeting technical challenges.
  • Four weekly hours of optional open studio time for participants to focus on building their projects and receiving additional support.
  • Individual guidance with personally-designed projects.
  • Introduction to working artists and the art in deCordova's 30-acre Sculpture Park and indoor galleries for inspiration.
  • Discussion of relevant art and ceramics history and concepts.
  • Related presentations on ceramic art and spatial design, color, and painterly techniques in ceramics, and alternative approaches and concepts to ceramics and ceramic art in the environment.
  • Discussion of the siting and context for outdoor ceramic work.

No experience necessary. For ages 16+.

Six-week courses: $375 for members, $435 for nonmembers (plus firing and materials fee based on usage)
Four-week courses: $250 for members, $290 for nonmembers (plus firing and materials fee based on usage)


Wednesday Workshops
June 5–July 10 (six weeks)


Thursday Workshops
June 6–27 (four weeks)



Wednesday Workshops
September 11–October 16 (six weeks)

Thursday Workshops
July 11–August 15 (six weeks)

September 12–October 17 (six weeks)

One-Day Workshops

Date Night Clay Sculpture Workshop

Friday, July 26, 6:30–8:30 pm

Rather than a movie, how about an evening of ceramics activity to do with your partner, best friend, or anyone you would like to do something different with? Unleash your creativity using your own hands and pottery tools provided to build inspired clay sculptures. We supply project ideas, materials, instruction, and hands-on assistance—and fire your pieces for you after the workshop.

All levels welcome. No ceramic experience necessary. For ages 18+


Leaf Impressions in Clay Workshop

Saturday, September 28, 2–4 pm

Immerse yourself in fall at deCordova, and spend the afternoon creating a ceramic work inspired by and impressed with leaves. Make a dish, a sculpture, or a hanging ornament, inspired by deCordova’s natural settings and the upcoming exhibition All the Marvelous Surfaces.

For ages 8+. Children under 16 must be accompanied by an adult.


About the Instructor

Resident artist Bruce Barry is a studio arts graduate from Bates College with advanced coursework in ceramics, etching, drawing, and painting. Barry’s teaching style encourages individual experimentation and personal growth and exposes students to contemporary art and ceramics practice. His work consists of organic, vessel-like ceramic pieces with painted-on writings declared as journal entries.

A finalist for the Massachusetts Cultural Council Crafts Grant in 2007, Barry has taught at deCordova since 1997. Bruce Barry is represented by Clark Gallery, Lincoln, MA and Elaine Baker Gallery, Boca Raton, FL.

Barry leads workshop participants in the development of hand-built sculptural works for architectural and natural environments. Along with deCordova’s emphasis on sculpture, our ceramic workshops focus on the sculptural possibilities of clay inspired by the ever-changing works in the Museum galleries and 30-acre Sculpture Park.