Event Details

Annual Flower City Pottery Invitational

OCtober 10-13, 2019 | Rochester, NY

Decorated ceramic mugs by Terri Kern

Flower City Arts Center is proud to welcome, for the fifth year, 20 premier ceramic artists from across North America for a long weekend celebrating the best in contemporary clay. The event includes a special artist reception, sale, pottery exhibitions, demonstrations, workshops and talks by the visiting artists.

This is a unique opportunity for collectors, clay enthusiasts and anyone who appreciates finely-crafted, handmade work to meet and talk with masters of the field and see a large body of their work. Whether you prefer contemporary design or rustic tableware, hundreds of hand-crafted pots will be exhibited and available for purchase, and their makers will be on site to talk about and demonstrate their work. For those of you who are new to contemporary ceramics, this is the perfect opportunity to see the range of work being made with this extremely versatile material.

Not in Rochester, but interested in purchasing work? We will have personal shoppers available for 15-minute appointments on Friday, October 11th beginning at 8pm EST ($20 ticket required). To secure an appointment, email ceramicstudio@rochesterarts.org.


Planning for the Flower City Pottery Invitational began in early 2014 when area potters Matt Metz and Richard Aerni discussed bringing fellow esteemed ceramic artists together for a weekend exhibit, following the example of similar shows like the Old Church Pottery Invitational in Demarest, NJ and the popular American Pottery Festival in Minneapolis. Rochester seemed like the perfect city to hold a similar event, being in the middle of a clay mecca, with RIT's School for American Craft and Alfred University close by, as well as strong clay programs in Syracuse and Buffalo. Metz and Aerni partnered with Flower City Arts Center and, together with artist Peter Pincus, invited colleagues from around the country to participate in the inaugural event October 2015.

Previous Events

For information about previous events, please visit our past websites:


Andrea Denniston, VA; Becky Lloyd, NC; Ben Carter, MT; Carolyn Dilcher-Stutz, NY; Gail Kendall, NE; Holly Walker, VT; Julie Crosby, NY; Kenyon Hansen, MI; Lindsay Oesterritter, VA; Lisa Orr, TX; Matthew Metz, NY; Rebecca Chappell, CO; Richard Aerni, NY; Sam Chung, AZ; Sanam Emami, CO; Sean O'Connell, MT; Shoko Teruyama, NY; Susan Dewsnap, ME; Terri Kern, OH; Tom Jaszczak, MN


See the information below on activities throughout the weekend! All venue locations are handicapped accessible!

Thursday, October 10, 2019

Andrea Denniston Ceramic Vase1:00 to 4 :00 p.m. Andrea Denniston Workshop: Slab Building and Underglaze Inlay

Andrea will demonstrate slab building functional forms, and how she creates her rich surfaces with underglaze inlay.

Advance registration is required. $35 Members, $40 Non-members

5:00 to 8:00 p.m. Tom Jaszczak Workshop: Bisque Molds & Drape Molds

Tom will show how he uses drape molds and bisque molds to create work. This workshop explores linking the two techniques and reveals several creative tangents from the two processes.

Advance registration is required. $35 Members, $40 Non-members

Friday, October 11, 2019

9:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m. Kenyon Hansen Workshop: Thrown & Altered Cups

This demo will focus on throwing, altering, layering textures and underglaze inlay. Kenyon will share and discuss how he builds surface to create depth and color variations in his work.

Advance registration is required. $35 Members, $40 Non-members

1:00 to 4:00 p.m. Sean O'Connell Workshop: Surface Decoration

This presentation will explore the ceramic surface as a means to understand aesthetics through unifying form, surface, and personal expression. Specifically, Sean will demonstrate his unique surface composition using grids to apply pattern using brushes, wax resist, and underglazes.

Advance registration is required. $35 Members, $40 Non-members

6-8pm Preview Sale & Opening Reception

Join us for a special evening to welcome the artists. Meet our 2018 nationally-recognized visiting artists and have the first opportunity to view and purchase their work! Tickets are $20 and can be purchased in advance online.

Saturday, October 12, 2019

10-5pm Exhibition & Sale open to the public (free admission)

Free Demonstrations and Artist Talks – 2nd Floor

No advance registration required but seating is first-come, first served.

11:00-12:00 Lindsay Oesterritter demonstrates how she carves her olive trough forms

12:30-1:30 Sam Chung talks about his work, career path and inspiration

2:00-3:00 Terri Kern talks about her life as a ceramic artist

3:30-4:30 Rebecca Chappell demonstrates how she builds with wheel thrown parts

Sunday, October 13, 2019

11-4pm Exhibition & Sale open to the public (free admission)

Free Demonstrations and Artist Talks – 2nd Floor

No advance registration required but seating is first-come, first served.

11:45-12:45 Sanam Emami talks about her work

1:30-2:30 Lisa Orr demonstration (topic tbd)

Plan Your Visit

Flower City Arts Center is located just outside downtown Rochester, NY at 713 Monroe Avenue, less than 1/8 of a mile off the 490 Interstate. Monroe Avenue begins downtown at the Strong Museum and is an eclectic area of eateries and small shops. Local cultural and shopping attractions like The George Eastman Museum and the Park Avenue neighborhood are just blocks away.

The historic, brick firehouse building that houses Flower City Arts Center dates to the early 1890s, with both stories dedicated to arts programming. Free on-street parking is available on Monroe Avenue, Wilcox Street, and surrounding streets, or visitors may park at School 35 on Field Street or School 23 on Barrington. Flower City Arts Center is fully accessible for wheelchair users with a reserved parking space at the front of the building, a front entrance ramp, elevator, and restroom.

Get Involved

Be A Volunteer

Whether you're super-organized and would like to help with set-up, or you're an empty nester with extra room to house a visiting artist for the weekend, we need your help! To volunteer during the event use our signup.com site to pick a spot https://signup.com/go/cHvtAog .

To host an artist, please contact Audrey at grants@rochesterarts.org.

Become a Sponsor

Sponsorship for the 2019 Flower City Pottery Invitational is available at various levels. You can view our Sponsorship Packet HERE. Contact Audrey Shaughnessy at (585) 271-5183 or grants@rochesterarts.org to confirm the level of support that fits best with your needs.

Thank you very much to our generous sponsors:

Hurlbut Care Communities logo

Standard Ceramic logo

Main Street Arts

Visions Federal Credit Union


Sumner Pearsall CPA logo

Airquip logo

RIT College of Art And Design logo