Ceramics Center Celebrates a Decade of Empowering Creativity

Iowa Ceramics Center and Glass Studio (ICCGS) is celebrating: “A decade of teaching, learning and creating together”.  In its 10 year history, iCCGS has helped people from 3 to 103 express their creativity using clay and glass.

The nonprofit organization, located in the Cherry Building in the NewBo neighborhood of Cedar Rapids, has achieved a milestone of serving over 10,000 students – and additionally has reached over 19,500 people in Eastern Iowa via its Mobile Outreach Program. Central to its mission of teaching and facilitating, the Center makes itself available to beginners, as well as established artists. It has classes and workshops catering to each member of every family in our area. It is the only such facility in Iowa and one of only a few such facilities in the Midwest.

The Center will be celebrating “A decade of teaching, learning and creating together” with a variety of special events and exhibitions throughout 2019 and invites individuals and families to experience the Center for themselves.  Scheduled throughout 2019 will be tours of the facility, an exhibition of community creations, ceramic wheel demonstrations, visiting artists workshops, a Family Day in June, a Kiln Yard Pottery Sale in August and a grand ‘10th Anniversary Party’ in October.

The outreach programs of the Center include a Mobile Clay Lab Van, staffed with teachers and artists, that visits neighborhood schools, community organizations such as Four Oaks, seniors in assisted living communities, day care centers and more, thus serving a broad spectrum of ages and needs.

Over the last decade, the Center estimates it has used over 130,000 pound of clay and 800,000 square inches of glass, to facilitate the creation of projects of all sorts, from functional everyday objects to expressive sculpture. Most importantly, the Center has enabled people to bring their visions to life.

In response to growing demand, the Center will soon provide a glass blowing studio with a hot glass kiln. Partial funding has been provided by a challenge grant from the Hall Perrine Foundation. The remaining $80,000 of capital must be secured through private contributions. Terry Pitts, president of the Center’s Board of Directors, has said “this will be the only public glass blowing and kiln facility between Dubuque and Minneapolis and thus will attract serious glass artists from across the Midwest, as well as enable us to train and assist local glass artists.”

Ellen Kleckner, the Executive Director of the Center, says that “the new addition will enhance our core mission of the Center as a place where community and creativity meet. As such it is a wonderful start to our second decade!”

Individuals and groups are encouraged to contact Ms. Kleckner at the Center for more information about possible involvement via email: info@ceramicscenter.org