St. Petersburg, Fla. – The Morean Center for Clay and St. Pete Clay have shared space in the Historic Train Station since 2009, offering supplies, education, studio space, and gallery sales in one building. This seamless access to clay services is a unique experience offered in few locations in the country.
The Historic Train Station, located on 22nd Street South in the Warehouse Arts District, has become one of the largest working potteries in the Southeast United States and continues to grow towards the original vision, created in 1996 by the St. Petersburg Clay Company, of becoming the premiere ceramic facility in the country.
“Our mission of arts education is at our very core for nearly a hundred years. This broadens our ability to continue to offer arts education, specifically in clay, to a wider audience more effectively by uniting the Train Station Center for Clay as one,” stated Morean Board Chair Nancy Loehr.
The Morean Center for Clay will continue to offer high-quality classes with professional teaching artists from the local community and plans have been made to continue in the tradition of St. Pete Clay in promoting the awareness and appreciation of the ceramic arts. In becoming one entity, St. Pete Clay now merges with the Morean Arts Center which will celebrate is 100th Anniversary in 2017.
“We are excited to become a part of the Morean Arts Center which has always been an integral part of the St. Peterburg arts community. This move solidifies our goal of creating a premiere ceramics facility and confirms our validity as an educational center and resource for the ceramics community nationwide,” stated Adam Yungbluth and Matt Schiemann, owners of St. Pete Clay since 2010.
The Morean Center for Clay will maintain the highly regarded Artists-in-Residence program which brings in over 40 applicants from around the country, only six are chosen per year. It will remain the St. Pete Clay Artists-in-Residence Program and will continue to focus on bringing future master ceramists to the area, many of whom will stay in the area after their residency program has completed. Yungbluth and Schiemann who have owned and operated St. Pete Clay for the past four years were both past Artists-in-Residence at the Historic Train Station.
Not only will the Historic Train Station be a destination for those interested in making clay art, but a haven for any pottery enthusiast. Fans and more importantly collectors of ceramics and pottery will be amazed at the level of talent, variety and shear amount of high quality clay art available for purchase.
“Our goals are to increase the number of visitors, art buyers and collectors to the Historic Train Station. We want our artists to be successful and that means we will be doing our best to provide them with a wider audience,” stated Wayne Atherholt, Executive Director of the Morean Arts Center.
Also onsite at the Historic Train Station are a variety of kilns including soda, salt, wood and the legendary Anagama kiln built by master potter Don Reitz. Artists are able to work daily in the studio, either as a member or an Artist-in-Residence, and can display and sell their finished work, which supports the importance of handmade objects. Classes and workshops are designed with the novice in mind and range from hand-building to wheel throwing, figurative sculpture to “Clay Friends & Fun”—an opportunity to create your own class. A dedicated focus to furthering artists’ understanding of ceramics by hosting professional artists from around the country for lectures and demonstrations will continue under the Morean Arts Center management.
Grand celebration of the merging of the two organizations will occur on Saturday, April 12 as part of Second Saturday Artwalk from 5-9PM. Open and FREE to the public.
The Morean Arts Center, with roots dating back to 1917 as the Art Club of St. Petersburg, focuses on an innovative, community-oriented approach to art and art education. The mission of the Morean Arts Center is to connect people with art and to contribute to the economic development of the region. Operating under the Morean Arts Center includes the Chihuly Collection, Glass Studio & Hot Shop and the Morean Center for Clay.