Enriching lives through art and craft

Mindful Pinch Forming

October 16 - 21, 2022

Paul Briggs  ·  psbriggs.com

Workshop at a glance

Explore the process and practice of pinched forming vessels without subtraction or addition of clay.


  • Centering clay for pinch forming
  • Pinching from both ends of the lump to form feet, stems and the pedestal foot


  • Stoneware clay
  • Masonite boards
  • Banding wheels


  • Knowledge of how to pinch forms using approximately 10 techniques for growing a form from one chunk of clay
  • Understanding art making as a spiritual practice, how creating art can facilitate flow experiences

Artist Bio

Paul Briggs is associate professor of art education at the Massachusetts Institute of Art and Design. He completed his PhD at Pennsylvania State University and his MFA at the Massachusetts College of Art in Boston. He has worked with clay since ninth grade. Ceramics quickly became the one place where he could experience flow. Briggs primarily works in slab building and pinch forming processes and his research includes art making as a spiritual practice.
Arrowmont Connections

  • Paul Briggs
  • Paul Briggs
  • Paul Briggs
  • Paul Briggs
  • Paul Briggs
  • Paul Briggs

Workshop Description

In this workshop students will learn a mindful approach to pinch forming by focusing on the movement of the clay upward and around the expanding clay form. You will discover that the vessel becomes a by-product of the process of growing and expanding a form from one piece of clay without addition or subtraction being mindful of transitions in the forming process. Participants will begin by gaining fluency with cylindrical, bowl and vase forms and refining these objects during the stages of the hardening of the clay. Having learned to competently move clay using only their hands, students will reserve clay within a form in areas of their choice to create relief designs and patterns that emerge from the pinch-formed vessel. Patience and slowing down is the key skill required. Open to all skill levels.

COURSE FEE: $690  ·  materials list

The health and safety of students, faculty, and staff is a priority at Arrowmont. To that end, a Personal Conduct & Social Distancing Policy has been adopted to foster a safe learning environment during the coronavirus pandemic. Click here for the detailed Policy.

Workshop Is Full

ART WORKSTENNESSEE ARTS COMMISIONTENNESSEE FOR THE ARTSTennessee Specialty License PlatesEAST TENNESSEE FOUNDATIONWindgate Foundation Arrowmont is being supported, in whole or in part, by federal award number SLFRP5534 awarded to the State of Tennessee by the U.S. Department of Treasury.

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