The Red Lodge Clay Center never ceases to disappoint. From functional art to abstract pieces that demand attention, the center continues to deliver quality ceramic art from exclusive resident artists.

Sculptors from all over the U.S. participate in the residency program at the center. Whether it is intentional or not, the selected artists tend to achieve the same result: taking what may be a seemingly typical concept and adding their own unique twist, like triangular dining ware with jagged edges, fragmented or distorted animals figures, and unusual floral patterns.

“Animals Among Us” features 15 artist’s take on animal shapes and appearances. While the artist is implementing their personal impressions to the work, the figures call to a bigger picture, producing several interpretations – depending on the viewer. The exhibit is on display from March 1–April 28, with a gallery closing reception from 5-7 p.m., April 26.

Abstraction is a common element in the clay center, yet nothing is so indefinite that observers cannot formulate a concrete appreciation for the work.

Featured artist, Stuart Gair finds balance in his art. Blending his personal interests of historical objects into his work, he creates functional pieces with contemporary elegance. Dinner plates have unconventional shapes, similar to an arrowhead or the bony shields of a stegosaurus. Pots have brilliant colors of ember peeking through charcoal coats, like a fire burning from within. Gair’s work allows the stories to come through the pottery, where his narratives becomes the observer’s.

Gair’s exhibit will be on display from March 1–April 28, with gallery closing reception from 5-7 p.m., April 26.

Say goodbye to winter’s bite with six feature artists honoring the colors and concepts of the temperate season of new beginnings. “Spring Fever” features ceramics that encapsulate warm, bright floral themes with a modern vibe that offers something for everyone. The exhibit is on display from May 3–26, with a gallery closing reception from 5-7 p.m., May 17.

The Red Lodge Clay Center also hosts the Advanced Student Project Network, a residency for undergraduates that allows students to study and experiment with their peers and artists. Students are nominated from all over the U.S., but only five are selected. Their work will be on display from May 3–26 with a gallery reception form 5-7 p.m., May 17.

Classes

Try your artist hand at any number of the classes available at the Red Lodge Clay Center.

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The Easter Holiday Class is a great way to bring the entire family together and create art together. Make a beautiful vase, centerpiece, or a unique gift. It’s family fun for all ages. Class is April 6, 10:30 a.m. to noon, $15 and advanced registration is required. For more information call 406-446-3993.

“Wheel and Wine” just sounds like fun. Bring a date or group of friends and learn how to create wheel-thrown pottery. Snacks and wine are included. 21 and older only. Class is April 6, 4-6:30 p.m., $55 and advanced registration is required. For more information call 406-446-3993.

Bring the kids and celebrate the matriarch in your family. The Mother’s Day Class gets kids in the mix. Yes, mothers deserve and love to be pampered on Mother’s Day, but a handmade keepsake from a child is always the best gift. Class is April 13, 10:30 a.m. to noon, $15 and advanced registration is required. For more information call 406-446-3993.

Artists, Kate Macdowell and Russell Wrankle are hosting a free demonstration and lecture workshop on their process of blending flora and fauna in sculptures. The workshop is from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m., April 27, and from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., April 28. Advanced registration is required. For more information call 406-446-3993 or email us at info@redlodgeclaycenter.com.

No matter if you are an aspiring artist or a loving enthusiast, the Red Lodge Clay Center appeals to art lovers of all kinds, calling to the stories we all tell and fitting our own molds.

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Senior Editor for Special Sections

Senior Editor for Special Sections at The Billings Gazette.