Mostly Cloudy   66.0F  |  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

Passport Rules for Kids

Passport Rules for Kids

If you're planning on traveling with your family outside of the country, they'll need a passport. Find out what you need and how to get passports for children.

Tips for Saving Cash on Flights

Tips for Saving Cash on Flights

Find out how your family can save money when flying abroad and in the country.

Tips for Traveling Internationally with Your Children

Tips for Traveling Internationally with Your Children

Thought about taking your kids for a trip abroad? You should! Here are tips to help make your cultural excursion easier – and cheaper – than you might think.

Staying Home Alone: How to Know When Your Child is Ready

Staying Home Alone: How to Know When Your Child is Ready

Whether you just want to run an errand or need to hit the gym for a break, it could be time to let your tween stay home alone. Here are a few ways to know your kid is prepared.

Craft Roundup: Get Ready for the Beach

Craft Roundup: Get Ready for the Beach

Whether you're hitting the pool or lake, southeast Michigan is packed with watery summer fun. These projects are inspired by (and ready for) this very topic!

Social Savvy: Raising Kids Who Can Make Connections

Social Savvy: Raising Kids Who Can Make Connections

At each stage of development, there are things parents can do for their kids to help them with social skills and making friendships.

Explore the Grand Canyon in Arizona

Explore the Grand Canyon in Arizona

If you haven't seen the wonder that is the Grand Canyon, you owe it to yourself and your kids to go.

Advertisement
Advertisement
Advertisement