Ceramics Association of New Zealand

About NZ Potters

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Welcome to the Ceramics Association of New Zealand (Inc)
Ceramics Association of New Zealand (Ceramics NZ) is the national body for professional and recreational potters throughout the country.

The organisation was formed in 1965 as the New Zealand Society of Potters to provide support for a small group of entrepreneurial potters, the editorial committee for The New Zealand Potter magazine, and their annual National Exhibition.

Its core purpose is to promote excellence in ceramics in New Zealand by providing development opportunities (exhibitions, lectures, workshops from touring artists), promoting awareness, advocating, and by maintaining resources and archives.

As part of this mandate the organisation publishes the national journal Ceramics New Zealand Magazine and maintains this website.

Merran Esson: To Glaze or Not to Glaze: Completing Ceramic Works. 
A professional development workshop for teachers and educators

The Ceramics Association of New Zealand and Te Uru Waitakere Contemporary Gallery present a professional development workshop for teachers and educators with Australian artist and 2019 Portage Ceramic Awards judge, Merran Esson.

In this workshop Merran Esson will take you through different approaches to finishing ceramic forms that can be used in a classroom environment. Esson will discuss her own practice and teaching experience while introducing you to a variety of techniques that go beyond functional glazes. The demonstration will focus on the use of slips, engobes and underglazes and applying these to leatherhard or greenware, techniques Esson developed for her program at the National Art School in Australia. You will broaden your technical knowledge of finishing and come out with a range of options and solutions for your students. The following information will be covered: terrasigilatta, slip, engobe, oxide washes, application of frits to highlight areas, underglazes, coloured stains, glaze application, sanchai glazing (as seen on Tang Dynasty Chinese horses and other wares), testing programs, firing temperatures.

10.30am                     Registrations and refreshments
11am-12.30pm         Presentation and follow up discussion
12.30-1.00pm           Lunch Break 
1.00-2.30pm              Demonstration and Q&A.

Merran Esson has been a practicing ceramic artist for over 40 years. Her large forms are influenced by the Australian rural landscape of her childhood and express the contrast between the extremes of the country and city. Her works are held in significant collections around the world. Esson has extensive experience in her field, exhibiting and teaching internationally. Recently retired as the Head of Ceramics at The National Art School in Sydney, and currently Lecturer-in-Charge of ceramics at the Australian Catholic University, Esson will bring a wealth of insight to New Zealand potters and educators. Her teaching experience extends to many other key Australian institutions, the Glasgow School of Art in Scotland, Duncan of Jorganstone College of Art, Dundee and Edinburgh College of Art. Merran has been awarded many awards including the 2019 Muswellbrook Art Prize for Ceramics. She is a member of the International Academy of Ceramics, Geneva. Merran is represented by Stella Downer Fine Art in Sydney.

Merran Esson travels to Aotearoa-New Zealand as the judge of the Portage Ceramic Awards, organised by Te Uru.


For bookings contact info@teuru.org.nz or phone 09 8178087 ext. 201

Limited to 30 participants


A Diamond Jubilee Exhibition

23 October - 14 November 2020


It is my great pleasure and delight to announce our  60th National Exhibition in Spring of 2020 in Dunedin.

The Exhibition will be held at the Otago Art Society in the historic Dunedin Railway Station.

The Dunedin Railway Station is centrally located and attracts thousands of visitors. The Otago Art Society’s Gallery, located on the first floor of this iconic landmark building, has an elegant ambience that will show off the works wonderfully.

It is only befitting to have this milestone exhibition in Dunedin as the very first ‘New Zealand Made’ pottery exhibition was held at the Otago Museum in 1957. This exhibition was the seed from which further exhibitions throughout the country evolved, eventually leading to the formation of the New Zealand Society of Potters. If you would like to read more about the early beginnings I recommend to google Helen Mason “Ten Years of Pottery in New Zealand”. Helen Mason, one of our early pioneer potters, gives an excellent  account of those first exhibitions.  

Much has changed since, but we can be proud of an unbroken history of our organisation that serves hobbyists and professionals, clubs, potters, ceramic artists and ceramicists all over New Zealand.

We build on a legacy which remembers the past but boldly embraces the future!

While the exhibition is still a year away, it gives you time to fully explore your creativity and think about what special work you may want to enter.
More information will be announced in the coming months, so keep an eye out for it.

Let’s make it a truly memorable exhibition!

Nicole Kolig

Judge Chosen for Portage

Te Uru in Titirangi is pleased to announce the judge of this year’s Portage Ceramic Awards as Australian ceramic artist Merran Esson.

Esson has been working internationally for more than 40 years but this will be her first visit to Aotearoa. She will be visiting in October and November to select finalists and winners, and present the awards for this prestigious event, organised and hosted each year by Te Uru in Titirangi with support from The Trusts Community Foundation.
“We are delighted to bring Esson to Aotearoa, to introduce her to our own clay community,” says Te Uru Director, Andrew Clifford. “We also look forward to learning more from her extensive experience of exhibiting and teaching internationally. The distinctive ways Esson’s own work responds to and is situated in the landscape will be of great interest to potters in Aotearora.”

Merran Esson - "Autumn on the Monaro"
Photo by Greg Piper

The textures and large forms of Esson’s artworks express the contrast between the extremes of country and city, which she says is an influence from her rural childhood. She uses clay and glazes to reference water tanks, silos and corrugated iron, which remind us of the influence of history and place. Esson recently retired as the Head of Ceramics at The National Art School in Sydney, and is currently Lecturer-in-Charge of ceramics at the Australian Catholic University. As well as many other key Australian institutions, she has spent much time teaching in Scotland, including Glasgow School of Art, Duncan of Jorganstone College of Art, Dundee and Edinburgh College of Art.

“It’s always exciting to get such an invitation to be part of an event like this in another part of the world that I haven’t been to before,” says Esson, who is looking forward to having a closer experience of work from our country. “I have read a lot about New Zealand ceramics whenever it has been profiled in the ceramic magazines.”

Esson will also give presentations in other centres in Aotearoa through a partnership between Te Uru and Ceramics NZ, the national body for professional and recreational potters.
Established in 2001, the Portage Ceramic Awards is a hallmark event for the New Zealand ceramics community, showcasing some of the best work currently being made, and serving as a platform for dialogue about developments in the ceramics field.

Entries for the 2019 Awards close on Monday 12 August, 2019.

The Premier Award winner and Merit Award winners will be announced at the Awards Night held at Te Uru in Titirangi on Thursday 21 November. The finalist works will then be exhibited at Te Uru from 22 November 2019 – February 2020.

More information about the awards can be found at www.teuru.org.nz/portage

Tour to Morocco

In April 2020 (April 4 - 19) I will be leading a 17 day small group ceramic tour to Morocco including a hands on traditional ceramics workshop.

In addition to the workshop, participants will enjoy a one day Berber cooking class as well as exploring Moroccan arts and ceramics in Fez, Safi and Meknes plus enjoy local food throughout.  A night in the desert amongst the Merzouga dunes under a thousand stars will be memorable and we will also visit Casablanca, Chefchouen and Marrakech.
The workshop will cater for all levels of experience and we also invite non-potting partners to join us.   I am limiting the workshop numbers to ensure that everyone can obtain full benefit.

Your members can find out more about the tour by clicking the link below or they can contact me personally via email as per below.
Marian Howell marian.ceramic.tours@gmail.com

About your tour leader:

This tour will be led by the well-known Australian Ceramicist, Marian Howell, who will provide expert commentary on ceramics during the tour. Marian is a past president of the Australian Ceramics Association and former Head of Ceramics at the National Art School and The Ceramics Design Studio, Sydney.

Click here to find out more about the tour.


It's time to exhibit in the Deep South!
Dunedin is open for applications!

November  7th - 10th

The More FM Arena
The Edgar Centre

Go to
www.dunedinartshow.co.nz for more information
or contact
John@dunedinartshow.co.nz  022 658 2960
kate@dunedinartshow.co.nz  022 100 7644


Open Ceramics Award - Northland Craft Trust

The Northland Craft trust, in association with Ceramics NZ, is delighted to present the Quarry Arts Centre Open Ceramics award 2019.

This is the second year for this annual event, after our inaugural award in 2018 was such wonderful success. Our aim is to encourage and develop the continuation of excellence in ceramics in New Zealand, and to showcase the unique talents and techniques of New Zealand ceramic artists.

Opening event and winners announced Friday 6th September 5:30pm.

To apply, please download and complete the entry form by visiting the website:

Ben Carter Interviews

Ben Carter was recently brought to New Zealand by the Ceramics Association of New Zealand. While he was here he took various workshops around the country and interviewed various potters. 

These are the podcasts of those interviews.

Click here for those interviews.

What's On
Andrea du Chatenier: Moonage Daydream
Wednesday July 17, 2019 - Friday November 1, 2019
The Pah Homestead TSB Bank Wallace Arts Centre 72 Hillsborough Rd, Hillsborough, Auckland
Yea Well, Now Since Then: Jim Cooper
Saturday August 10, 2019 - Saturday October 12, 2019
13 Rose Road, Ponsonby. PO Box 68762, Wellesley Street, Auckland
"Reticulated" - an exhibition by Sue Rutherford
Sunday September 8, 2019 - Saturday September 28, 2019
Hullabaloo Art Space, Cromwell Heritage Precinct, Central Otago
Upskill Workshop
Saturday September 28, 2019 - Saturday September 28, 2019
Otago Potters Group, Dunedin
Slip slp slap - Rebecca Flowerday
Monday October 7, 2019 - Sunday October 13, 2019
Thistle Hall, 293 Cuba st, Te Aro, Wellington
Centred - New Work by Nicky Jolly
Saturday October 12, 2019 - Sunday October 20, 2019
Front Room Gallery, 300 Point Chevalier Rd, Auckland
Jean-Nicolas Gerard - Master Class
Saturday November 2, 2019 - Sunday November 3, 2019
ASP - Auckland
Friday October 23, 2020 - Saturday November 14, 2020
Dunedin Railway Station, Dunedin
New Members Pages
Created or updated
within the last month

Heather Anne Atkins

Ceramics NZ Exhibitions

Click any of the images below to see the archived version of the listed exhibition.

Did you know?
You can look through our collection of potters' marks online
Click here to go to the "Potters' Marks page.

Did you know?
There are exhibition opportunities available on this website.
Click here to see the opportunities available at the moment.

Ceramics Association of New Zealand

Registered as an incorporated society in 1965 by an enthusiastic group of potters in Wellington, New Zealand, Ceramics NZ has grown to become a significant international voice in New Zealand ceramics. The affiliation of about three dozen independent pottery clubs throughout New Zealand together with a number of corporate businesses greatly increases its effective membership. We are a national, not-for-profit organisation representing the interests of practising potters and ceramicists, students of ceramics and all those interested in New Zealand ceramics. We actively support and promote quality, and we encourage and support specialist ceramics education nationally.
Click here to Join Ceramics NZ.

Ceramics NZ,
   PO Box 14680,    Kilbirnie, Wellington 6241     e-mail secretaryceramicsnz@gmail.com
Webmaster - Lawrence Ewing - lawrenceewing8@gmail.com