Earth and Water 16: Ceramic Art in the St. Croix Valley

DECEMBER 7 2018 – JANUARY 13, 2019
The Phipps Center for the Arts – Overlook Gallery

For the past six years Northern Clay Center and The Phipps Center for the Arts have partnered on a series of exhibitions and demonstration workshops titled Earth and Water: Ceramic Art in the St. Croix Valley aimed at increasing the profile of ceramic artists living and working throughout the lower St. Croix River Valley watershed. This cross-state collaboration featured two to three ceramic artists annually at The Phipps. In addition, featured artists presented an artist talk prior to each opening reception and a workshop or demonstration event. 

Our latest iteration of artists, Janel Jacobson and Will Swanson, have nurtured and encouraged one another’s love for making pottery since they met in 1984. They work together out of Sunrise Pottery in Sunrise, MN, where they create pottery for regional and national shows, as well as for annual studio events, including the Saint Croix Valley Pottery Tour, in May ,and their Fall Sale, in October. Swanson’s focus is on making tableware mainly using stoneware clay. Jacobson makes a broad assortment of functional pieces from both porcelain and stoneware clays.

“Studio ceramics has changed and blossomed a great deal since I began making pottery in 1970 and carving porcelain from the mid-1980’s to 1995 …I currently enjoy using porcelain clay while making useful pots, and continue to pursue developing forms that may be gently reshaped, carved and textured to be enhanced with celadon glazes; or to serve as a canvas for active, responsive carbon trapping glazes.”– Janel Jacobson

 “In all my pots, I want the character of the earth materials and the hand-making process to be evident. The best of these pots should attain a satisfying simplicity while conveying the uniqueness of the handmade object.” – Will Swanson

This particular iteration of Earth and Water: Ceramic Art in the St. Croix Valley concludes the series.  Northern Clay Center thanks the staff and community members of The Phipps Center for the Arts for collaboratively celebrating the talents of so many fine ceramic artists along the St. Croix Valley!

Questions?  Please contact The Phipps Center at 715.386.2305 or visit

The Phipps Center is located at:
109 Locust St., Hudson, WI 54016