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THE PRINTED FIGURE: Cristina Córdova and Jason Bige Burnett

This course is currently full. Please complete registration (excluding payment) to be included on the waiting list as we often have cancellations.

APRIL 15-19, 2019

Cost: $980

9 students per session

Location: Córdova Studios, Penland, NC

We are joining forces for a 5th time to teach this unique combination of figurative ceramic sculpture and surface development through the use of underglaze transfers and monotypes!

The course will include:

  • The basics of anatomy and proportion, building a torso with slabs and finishing and detailing to optimize expression

  • An assortment of printing techniques for clay such as screen, monotype and plaster printing as well as tissue transfers and decals

  • Lectures to show how artists utilize “printing” in clay and inspire conceptual investigation

  • Clay and all necessary materials for printing and developing surfaces including silkscreens, plaster, decals, transfers, slips, underglazes and glazes

  • Insider resources regarding clays, printing materials for clay, printing and anatomy books, models and specialty tools

  • 2 firings

  • A great lunch and afternoon coffee or tea

  • 8am-10pm access to the studio



MAKING FACES: an exploration

MAY 20-25, 2019

Daniel Scott Morris/ Cristina Córdova

Throughout history faces in the form of masks have been used in ceremonies and performances to evoke an alternate sense of presence at the service of ritual and entertainment. These objects augment and  transform gestures into something bold and captivating, offering a vivid reinterpretation of our shared human experience.
In this course we will depart from a hand-built naturalistic head and launch into an exploration of  expression through distortion and stylization to create faces in the format of masks of different sizes in clay which we will later decorate and fire. Alongside this, students will learn to make a larger papier-mâché mask from a sculpted clay mold. They will learn the best foundational steps to making a mask with papier-mâché, as well as more advanced techniques, using air dry paper clay, that can help them to create refined and delicate but durable forms. This will be a unique opportunity to focus on the potential of the face to convey meaning across different mediums . All levels are welcome.

Cost: $700

9 students per session

Location: Córdova Studios, Penland, NC

The course will include:

  • The basics of head anatomy and proportion, building a head with slabs to transform it into a mask, creating a mask out of papier-mâché over a clay mold and finishing and detailing to optimize expression. We will also touch on surface possibilities across both mediums.

  • Informal presentations around the use of masks historically and in contemporary applications to inspire conceptual investigation

  • Clay and all necessary materials.

  • 2 firings

  • A great lunch and afternoon coffee or tea

  • 8am-10pm access to the studio

THE CLAY FIGURE: Construction and Surface/ LA FIGURA EN BARRO: Construcción y superficie

with Cristina Córdova

October 7-11, 2019

12 students per session 

Cost: $750

Cost includes slips,underglaze transfers and clay

Location: Vincenza Espacio Creativo, Guaynabo, Puerto Rico

The workshop will cover basic concepts of anatomy and proportion to generate figurative compositions built with slabs, finished with slips and underglaze transfers. We will discuss preliminary construction strategies using drawings, photos and models as well as conceptual catalysts to strengthen the sculptural proposal. Demonstrations will include the construction of head, torso, arms and hands, as well as techniques that detail how to optimize the clarity and expression of the figure in clay. Students will explore the possibilities of laminating their sculpture with color and patterns through the use of slips and transfers to create vibrant, dynamic surfaces before bisque. Although the main objective will be the construction of a ceramic torso between 15-25 "h, Cristina will discuss how to use these techniques to construct the complete figure at different scales through the use of simple reinforcements and supports.

El taller cubrirá conceptos básicos de anatomía y proporción para generar composiciones figurativas construidas a base de planchas, terminadas con engobes y transferencias. Discutiremos estrategias preliminares de construcción utilizando dibujos,fotos y maquetas al igual que catalíticos conceptuales para fortalecer la propuesta escultórica. Las demostraciones incluirán  la construcción de la cabeza, el torso, los brazos y las manos, así como técnicas que detallan como optimizar la claridad y la expresión de la figura en barro. Los estudiantes explorarán las posibilidades de superponer su escultura con color y patrónes a través del uso de engobes y transferencias para crear superficies vibrantes y dinámicas antes de bizcocho. Aunque el objetivo principal será la construcción de un torso de cerámica entre 15-25 "h, Cristina discutirá cómo utilizar esta técnica de plancha para construir la figura completa en diferentes escalas a través del uso de armaduras y apoyos simples.

Because of the slow, gradual unfolding of a clay sculpture it is often hard to relay the full arc of a piece from beginning to end in the traditional workshop context. This course will offer an intimate vantage point to study and understand all of the steps, tools and materials that come into play to create a clay head. With the methods showcased in this course and the open floor chat sessions between demonstrations to answer questions you will be fully empowered to create clay heads of different scales in your own studio. This course includes supplemental printed material that follows the course structure and several opt-ins to customize your experience. 


VIDEO MODULE 1: Before We BeginTools, Materials and Workspace Setup

VIDEO MODULE 2: Sourcing Anatomical References

VIDEO MODULE 3: Hollow Construction With Easy Patterns At Any Scale

VIDEO MODULE 4: The Skull Basics

VIDEO MODULE 5: Adding Features and Introducing Tools

VIDEO MODULE 6: Tricks and Techniques for Refining and Cleaning the Face

Come join over 140 students!


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This course will focus on demystifying glazes and other fireable surfaces in the context of low-fire figurative ceramics and sculpture ranging from cone 05 to cone 1. It will address not only the formulation and sourcing of slips, underglazes and glazes through innumerable recipes and listings but the different methods of applying and firing these materials to achieve rich, layered surfaces of extraordinary depth and interest. The course takes you step by step to reveal the process behind each showcased piece and includes an accompanying e-book: SÚPER-FICIE: Surfaces For Low-fire Figurative Ceramics And Sculpture

After years of gathering insights into pigments, slips, underglazes and glazes though my own work I have organized my favorite approaches to bring sculpture to life. This course will show you how to approach surface development in a multi-layered, dynamic way that will open door after door of possibilities to expand and compliment your forms


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