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Gallery Updates

Landmark Moments: Anniversaries, Birthdays and Other Dates

John & Diane

I mark my days, weeks, months, years by what's happened in the past.  Two years ago this October we went to China. Twenty-one years ago John and I married. Seventeen years ago John's Dad died and my Mom died.  There are birthdays and holidays and weddings scattered throughout these years. It's easy to forget how much my past influences my decisions today, so making a point of remembering these moments and even celebrating them brings my attention to how important they are to me now. 

Handmade Pottery Making Process

Actually, since we work hard every day making pottery, mowing the lawn, washing the dishes, weeding the garden, talking to customers, demonstrating in our studio, vacuuming the gallery floors, sweeping the cobwebs that re-appear daily, making a big deal of an anniversary may even seem like one more chore on my To Do list. And I even groan and whine to myself, why do I have to throw a party, again. 


Because we should pay attention to what we've done. We should honor the hours spent in the studio or gallery or on the lawn mower, that kept us here for forty-one years. We should stop and appreciate our own selves, and then share that amazement with our friends.  We are amazed that it's already been forty-one years in Ellison Bay at EBP.  

Ellison Bay Pottery Studios & Gallery

It IS a big deal, and on Saturday, August 22 from 1-5 we're going Celebrate our 41st year here AND John's 72nd Birthday all at once.  We're going to eat cupcakes and sip something cold and refreshing and toast ourselves and YOU, all of our friends.  We'd enjoy ourselves a whole lot more if you were here to celebrate this with us. 


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Take a Class with John this June at The Clearing in Ellison Bay

Over the years people have asked us to teach a class but we've had to turn the opportunities down because our studio is not large enough. Collaborating with The Clearing has alleviated this so we're announcing this first ever chance to learn from John Dietrich AND another great potter John Hanson. 

The week long class: Making Pottery: Beginning and Beyond 

This is from The Clearing catalog:

"In this week of pottery making, you will have the opportunity to explore some of the roots of the craft and get different perspectives and techniques from two long-time professional potters. Both Johns—Hanson and Dietrich—are fortunate to have had a long relationship with Door County's Potter Emeritus, Abe Cohn, who died in 2013. They will share some stories, philosophy, materials and tools from Abe and from their many years of teaching and making pottery.


Hand-building will be emphasized in this class. You’ll have turns on the potter’s wheel, with assistance from both Johns, to produce a variety of pottery. Work can be pit and Raku fired on Friday at Ellison Bay Pottery just across the road from The Clearing." Read more HERE

BUT! There's More!!

The Clearing has scholarships available. Contact them directly here: 877-854-3225. This information is NOT on the Clearing website but shared with the instructors. Please don't hesitate to call get more information. 

If you haven't been to The Clearing then you are in for a treat. I call it a sleep away camp for adults.

It's called The Clearing because the founder, Jens Jensen, world famous landscape architect, believed we as adults needed to get away from our every day life and clear our minds by learning something new.  Please take a moment to check out the website. 

The Clearing is right across Garrett Bay Rd from our home.  And they are the best neighbors that anyone could ask for. 






John Hanson started Mudslingers Pottery in Colorado in 1998. John Hanson also worked at the Potters Wheel, with Abe Cohn in Fish Creek. 

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Winter in Ellison Bay: Art Show--New Dog--New Ideas ---Oh My!!!

Valentine's Day means Art Show for us this February in Madison, WI at the Olbrich Botanical Gardens. If you saw us last November there then you know how fab the show was. Let your friends know. If you can't find us at our booth you'll know we're enjoying the gardens. 
Introducing our Studio Dog-who supervises us, or something like that. Mostly, though, he's looking for a lap and John is sitting down, so....? Bo is getting used to life in a pottery studio and soon he'll become our new gallery dog. 
NEW for this year is this deeper casserole or baking dish. There are lids, but I wasn't around to shoot those. I love these and I know you will too. John's going to make some bigger ones for those family dinners that come around. 
Bowls are on our mind all the time, but especially in the winter when we can focus on new shapes and art. Last year's Door County Potter's Guild show in May had all the potters making one of a kind bowls and we were hooked. Not quite obsessed. But almost. John throws these and we took turns adding our January thoughts to the surface. 
There are the regulars that are getting a make-over as well. The humble mug is really a sculpture you hold everyday making them uniquely personal. The handles are the same, though. They must fit your hand, whether you're a girly girl or a manly man, and John wants each person to feel like that mug belongs in your hand. But wait till you see the mugs and steins.  Oh, baby, they are, well, wonderful. 
That's it for now. Thanks for reading!

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Kiln Furniture is Not Comfortable

Kiln furniture isn't for sitting. It's for holding shelves in a kiln. This is where John stores his furniture between firings. 
This is for plates. The posts hold the plate stand and then we can stack two/three plates in one space. Very handy when we're filling a dinnerware order. 
Posts on the floor of the kiln. These will probably stay here until the next firing. 
And here is a pile of cone packs. 
Cone packs hold pyrometric cones that measure accurately the temperature in the kiln. John uses cone packs and a pyrometer and the color of the flame when he looks into the peep hole to manage his firing. I like to think the cone packs are a kind of art. 
New Shape
New Glazes
I love these. 

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Nature and Our Ceramics

Our ceramics are inspired by the stunning natural beauty of Door County, the southern part of the amazing Niagara Escarpment.

The arbor vitae cling to the cliffs and fill the air with it’s tenacious aromas, the fresh air off Lake Michigan and Green Bay lift spirits, the clear water and skies expand hearts and minds of all who visit.


It’s impossible to not be inspired. Our shapes, images and glazes reference the lakes, cliffs, forests, beaches, and weather in each piece of functional art we make.

We translate these powerful experiences into abstract and universal images that elicit an instant response by the viewer which makes visiting our showroom an interactive experience.

A bowl or pitcher may be reminded of a certain beach, person or moment, or a certain season, night sky, a concert or meal when you see a bowl or pitcher.  A connection is made, the story becomes yours and you know you've found what you were looking for.  


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