Ongoing, Multi-Week Workshops

Ceramic Sculpture: Expressive Vessels, Forms, and Environments

Wednesdays or Thursdays starting January 2 or 3, and February 27 or 28 (six-week course)
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 Sheila Pepe: Hot Mess Formalism 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: $355 for members, $415 for nonmembers (plus firing and materials fee based on usage)


Wednesday Workshops (Six Weeks)
January 2–February 6


February 27–April 3


Thursday Workshops (Six Weeks)
January 3–February 7


February 28–April 4



NEW! Family Clay Saturdays: Parent-Child Ceramic Series

Saturdays, March 2–23 (four-week course)
10 am–12 pm 
Get your hands dirty and join us for a 4-session family clay workshop. Work side by side with your child(ren) to create two projects, a creative creatures mug and a nature sculpture inspired by deCordova's Sculpture Park. Learn basic hand-building and glazing techniques and stimulate creative ideas in a fun-filled, collaborative environment for both age groups. For ages 5–9 with adult.


One-Time Workshops

Date Night with Clay Workshop for Valentine's Day

An evening of ceramics activity for couples! Work as a team decorating clay “hearts,” working on the wheel, or building your own signature romantic sculpture. For ages 21+.

Select from the four dates:
Saturday, February 9, 5–7 pm


Sunday, February 10, 4–6 pm


Tuesday, February 13, 6–8 pm


Wednesday, February 14, 6–8 pm


All levels are welcome. No ceramic experience is necessary.


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.