Fair   45.0F  |  Forecast »

Pewabic Pottery in Detroit Brings Sculpture to Life for Kids

Playing with clay is a gateway to discovering 3D art forms. And at this historic place, families are welcome to explore and spark creativity.

It's a well-known icon, and it's wide open for kids to explore. Pewabic Pottery, Detroit's historic pottery founded in 1903 by Mary Chase Perry Stratton, is a city treasure – and National Historic Landmark. Its renowned glazes cover tiles found in key local places, and you can take home a piece of this art, too, from its gift shop.

Your family gets a serious dose of clay and kilns here. Every day of the week (minus a few holidays), Pewabic has public hours. It frequently has an exhibit on display, showing off the handiwork of both renowned artisans and talented staff and students – from vessels and tiles to sculptures sure to inspire.

Pewabic Pottery

Want to nose around? You're welcome to take a free, self-guided tour at any point between 10 a.m. and 4 p.m. Monday-Friday. Start with the exhibit called Journey of Pioneering Spirit: The Life of Mary Chase Perry Stratton, and take a peek at the museum (featuring early Pewabic pieces) and the fabrication studio, where you can watch artists at work. A gallery shows off fine contemporary ceramic work by 70-plus artists in North America.

There's a chance to get your hands dirty, too, says program director Jessica Guzman – who notes that, for kids kids, clay play can boost finger dexterity, self-soothing and expression. Occasional workshops happen on an ongoing basis, typically on a Saturday (about $30), and beginning wheel throwing classes run eight weeks for about $165 and are great for teens, she notes. Be sure to register in advance for both.

Once you've explored here, head out into metro Detroit and try to spot Pewabic in public. Its tiles are in spots like the Detroit Institute of Arts (look at the fountain alcoves and stair risers), Detroit Public Library (the fireplace in children's reading room – can you believe it cost $520 to install in 1921?), Detroit Zoo (peacock mosaics in Wildlife Interpretative Gallery) and Comerica Park, home of the Detroit Tigers (facade tiles).

Swing by for special events, too, like the Earthy Treasures shopping show, which happens annually around the holidays (roughly early November through Christmas Eve), to get an even broader glance of the magic you can create with clay.

Add your comment:
Advertisement

More »Latest Articles & Blog Posts

Upcycled May Day Flower Cone Craft

Upcycled May Day Flower Cone Craft

For May 1 this year, share some festive flowers with friends or neighbors with a snazzy presentation featuring a simple paper towel tube and washi tape.

Craft Roundup for Earth Day Fun

Craft Roundup for Earth Day Fun

Repurpose stuff around the house with these family DIY projects, including a jewelry pom-pom box, cereal box gift bags – even a cool makeover for old balloons.

Living Room Spring Cleaning Checklist

Living Room Spring Cleaning Checklist

It's a formal spot in the house – mainly used for entertaining – that gets less foot traffic on a daily basis. This also means it's easier to clean! Get the scoop here.

Bathroom Spring Cleaning Checklist

Bathroom Spring Cleaning Checklist

Haven't kept up on scrubbing your tub or shower? Now is the time to clean up this much-used space – with these helpful tips.

Basement Spring Cleaning Checklist

Basement Spring Cleaning Checklist

Whether it's leftover holiday decor or old toys, this spot in your home becomes the catchall for your family's stuff. Organize it this season with these tips.

Garage Spring Cleaning Checklist

Garage Spring Cleaning Checklist

You just don't park your car there! This space does serious double duty as family storage space. Get everyone involved in cleaning it up with these tips.

Office Spring Cleaning Checklist

Office Spring Cleaning Checklist

It’s filled with papers, old files and tons of stuff to toss. Get started with these tips for organizing your home office.

Advertisement
Advertisement
Advertisement