Clayworkers' Guild of Illinois A dedicated group of ceramic clay artists and artisans.

Robin Hopper Workshop     October 2011

You may return to the Home Page and the main menu under Workshops...then use the pull-down menu to reach "Upcoming Events" to see what workshops we have in store for 2017!

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A CWG tribute with this slideshow to Robin Hopper, 

who passed recently.  Good-Bye, Robin.  You were and will continue to be an inspiration for all.  You will be missed!


The link to the last video Robin made just a couple months before his death, is below.   It is the introduction to his  "Swansong" video made to raise money for his favorite charities.  Beautiful and heart felt!  You may purchase this video on that website.  A 6 minute "must watch":

The above 6 minute video is an introduction to a two hour plus video made by Robin not long ago. Facing a diagnosis of terminal liver cancer, Robin had undertaken this very personal DVD project in order to send much needed financial help to both the British Columbia Arts Programs For Youth and to the Jimmy Fund, the pediatric wing of the Dana Farber Cancer.   Institute .  It is available for purchase from the Greenbarn site, below.  Swansong is 143 minutes  of memoir, musings, demos, a tour of his award winning garden and much, much more. Informative, humorous, and possibly even tearful, this is Robin's final video performance and this is our chance to help him by supporting some very worthy causes. Video may be purchased at the website, below: 

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The Chase Gamblin Workshop was held on Saturday, July 29th. 2017.   

Click on this link to visit his website: 

Chase is a fantastic ceramic artist and a wonderful workshop presenter!   Our heartfelt thanks go out to Chase for showing us how to apply slip like we have never done before!  

 About the Workshop:  Well known for his functional inspired altered vessels, Chase demonstrated his techniques for creating complex wheel-thrown stacked forms and applying heavy white slip surface decoration. This lively one-day workshop focused on multiple ways of stacking and attaching small wheels-thrown shapes to create    larger forms.    Participants learned to use slip to create visual interest.    An in-depth presentation exploring Chase’s history and personal approach to ceramics set the tone for the workshop.  Chase  discussed, in detail, his finishing, firing, and glazing techniques. 

About the Artist:   After receiving his BFA from the Appalachian Center for Craft Chase Gamblin went on to receive his Master of Fine Arts Degree from Texas Tech University in 2010. During grad school he was an artist in residence in Vicchio Italy and the Sanbao Ceramic Art Institute in China.  After graduate school Chase went on to be a resident artist and visiting lecturer at the University of North Dakota, build a ceramics program at Cumberland University in Tennessee, as well as work in a local community clay studio in Bloomington IN. Chase exhibits his work nationally and internationally. He is currently an Academic Specialist and Fine Arts studio Coordinator at Indiana University in Bloomington, IN.

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Our 2016 Members only Demo on

November 5th.  with Cj Neihaus is over

Our own Cj Neihaus demonstrated without cost to a "Members Only" group at the Old Courthouse Art Gallery. We want to thank Cj for a great day and for sharing her expertise with us.     Another excellent reason to join the CWG.   Check out her website:

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Our October 2016 Workshop with Lauren Karle is over 

The Clayworkers' Guild of Illinois, McHenry County College, MCC Clay Club, visitors and new members had such a fun, full, inspiring and informative workshop with New Mexico based clay artist, Lauren Karle, Friday, October 28th and Saturday, October 29th, 2016... Thank you, Lauren! Lauren appears in the October 2016 Ceramic's Monthly on page 104.

We learned so much from our guest artist who shared with us how she creates her slip and underglaze transfer patterns that enhance her low fire clay pieces.  She also shared her method of hand-building which was also new to us and to which she has given the name  "Sewing Clay".   Lauren is well known for her clay "sewing technique" and style which is not only unique, but beautifully executed.  Her work is truly exciting because it represents more than just the fine art of ceramics, itself.  Lauren uses her art to identify with others and draw people together  through her involvement in society and the people around her, no matter where she is in her travels or at home.   A quote form her: "My ultimate mission is to facilitate connections between cultures and within communities." And that she does!

Lauren Karle is an artist who is involved in many other areas of life which are all enhanced by her work and dedication to the people with whom she interacts.  She is proud to be active in the Socially Engaged Craft Collective (SECC), which is an expanding network of artists who create a wide range of socially engaged art projects that are rooted in the history of craft objects and materials.   One of her passions is to make two mugs from the same piece of clay, sharing the same pattern and the same underglazes and/or slips and fired in the same firing.  She keeps one mug for herself and then shares the other "like mug" with another person that she will think of as she sips tea from hers...and that other person will think of her as they use their own "hand-built twin, but of "one spirit", mug.

Kudos, Lauren for a wonderful 2-day workshop that excited the Clayworkers' Guild, MCC, MCC Clay Club and new members.   A huge thank you to Trish Vollkommer, our CWG President, Tom Vician, our V.P., Josie Roshell for hosting Lauren at her home, Mary O'Meara, for bringing Lauren to us and to all who helped us have, yet another, successful workshop!

Lauren Karle Workshop Slideshow 

                                             Lauren's mugs

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2015 Workshop

This was our December 2015 workshop with Terri Kern.   This workshop was held in the Ceramic Studio at McHenry County College in Crystal Lake, Il.    MCC is our home base.   Seminars may be held in the Conference Center, but our "Hands-On Workshops" are usually held in the Ceramic Studio.