The Potomac and Shenandoah Rivers are waiting for you. The C&O Canal and Appalachian Trail are in wildflower bloom. Get out and explore! By connecting with our own waterways, our watershed, we find a contentment and richness in or lives…it’s worth it.
***Potomac Clay Weekend Map***
Kirke Martin and M4 Studios, Bill Van Gilder Pottery, Lisa Kovatch Pottery, Pam and Ren Parziale and Sycamore Pottery, and Joy Bridy Pottery are all in their studios this weekend, looking forward to hearing about your adventures along the rivers and trails, and showing you their newest works. See Pam’s traditional brushwork of birds, Lisa’s stylized carvings of nature’s vines and birds, Bill’s huts inspired by his time in Africa, Kirke’s wood fired aesthetics paired with spring’s branches, and Joy’s kinetic sculptures in action (workshop Sunday at noon).
And while you’re out and about, it’s also the second annual South Mountain Festival, the 7th annual Panhandle Earth Day Celebration at Morgans Grove Park, Stony Field Farm’s kickoff farm day, Harpers Ferry Bolivar Art Walk, and the Jefferson and Berkeley County House and Garden Tour, for starts. Something for everyone on this gorgeous April weekend….see you out there!
Bill van Gilder Pottery makes his pots in an old restored barn right along the Appalachian Trail, at Gathland State Park, atop South Mountain. His barn and historic gatehouse home set the aesthetic tone for his work and life.
Deeply involved in the South Mountain creative community, Bill’s gallery and studio are open every weekend, and weekdays by appointment. You can get a taste for local flavors by parking at the Gathland parking lot, hiking north or south on the AT, stopping in for a taste of a potter’s life, then driving down the road a bit to the Distillery Lane Ciderworks, Caprikorn Farms, or any of the other local delectables nearby. This year, Potomac Clay Weekend falls on the same weekend as South Mountain Spring Festival, so there is double to do up on the mountain.
Giving workshops and demonstrations from near to far, local to international, making his own line of tools…Bill takes the potter’s life to heart. You can tell that he’s been potting since he was 15 years old, but ask him about his travels, and you’ll be charmed for sure. His pots are truly functional, meant for use every day in your kitchen and home. His teaching skills are all about making excellent functional pottery. With upcoming workshops in Pennsylvania, Minnesota, New York and Delaware, grab an opportunity to learn from the real deal, where you can see his ease with the clay, learn a new move or two, and get out hiking somewhere new and exciting.