Pin It
Favorite

Hands On 

Urban Art Co-op offers a new space to discover clay, among other things

click to enlarge Karen Mannino and Nick Lowe throw clay on a pottery wheel at Urban Art Co-op. - SARAH WURTZ
  • Sarah Wurtz
  • Karen Mannino and Nick Lowe throw clay on a pottery wheel at Urban Art Co-op.

Nick Lowe is a hands-on kind of guy, but his day job in information technology doesn't provide much opportunity for that.

"I pound on a keyboard all day writing code, transforming data, and solving virtual problems," says Lowe. It's worthwhile, he says, but there is nothing physical to look at or touch.

On weekends and evenings, however, Lowe explores a more tangible type of touch.

"Pottery is completely different," he says. "I do find that my time at the studio allows me to stop thinking about all the multi-variable details that fill up my workday and lets me focus on a completely different set of problems to solve. Problems that are both simpler and, in many ways, more complex than telling a computer what to do."

Lowe, who began working with clay three years ago, is president of Urban Art Co-op and one of five founding members of the new art space. Other founding members include Karen Mannino, who has a degree in studio art, as well as Autumn Bunton, John Newman, JoDee Moody and Keith Harger, all of whom teach classes there.

"[The idea behind the project] was to create a place that would support local artists of all levels and create an environment of collaboration among different art media," says Lowe.

Annual membership is $50 per year, plus studio rental fees, which allows members access to both wheel-throwing and hand-building. The space is also available for event rental, such as birthday parties and corporate team building.

The classes taught at Urban Art Co-op are mostly along the lines of wheel-throwing and hand-building, says Moody, the co-op's marketing director. They're adding workshops in other media, such as jewelry-making and felting — a technique for making fabric — and hope to set aside space to display artwork.

All ages and ability levels are welcome at Urban Art Co-op, says Lowe, who notes that one of the things that attracted him to working with clay is its experimental nature.

"Using only my hands, I physically choose what properties I want to give to the lump of clay spinning on the potter's wheel," he says, adding that, unlike in computing, mistakes not only happen, they're a great teaching tool.

"An unintentional bump of a pot being thrown, or a glaze that runs when applied, or a kiln that over-fires can lead to pieces of pottery that could never be planned for, but are cherished for their uniqueness," says Lowe. "I really like this aspect of pottery, or, I guess, any art in general where mistakes can become something more than a bug that needs to be fixed." ♦

Urban Art Co-op • 3017 N. Monroe • urbanartcoop.org • 720-7624

Related Locations

  • Pin It

Latest in Arts & Culture

  • Variations of Zuill
  • Variations of Zuill

    Badass cellist. Musical missionary. Grammy winner. Zuill Bailey redefines Bach for the 21st century
    • Feb 16, 2017
  • Backstage Story
  • Backstage Story

    Behind the preparation and precaution: Why it practically takes a village to put on a Cirque du Soleil show
    • Feb 16, 2017
  • The Genius of Bach
  • The Genius of Bach

    His lasting influence, and a look at this year's Bach Festival schedule
    • Feb 16, 2017
  • More »

Comments


Comments are closed.

Today | Tue | Wed | Thu | Fri | Sat | Sun
Rick Bartow: Things You Know But Cannot Explain

Rick Bartow: Things You Know But Cannot Explain @ Museum of Art/WSU

Tuesdays-Saturdays, 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Continues through March 11

All of today's events | Staff Picks

More by Carrie Scozzaro

  • Soak it Up
  • Soak it Up

    Spokane Arts highlights local minority artists for "Saturate," February's biannual visual arts tour
    • Feb 2, 2017
  • UPDATE | Anthony's Restaurant
  • UPDATE | Anthony's Restaurant

    A Washington favorite makes its way to Idaho
    • Jan 26, 2017
  • When One Door Closes
  • When One Door Closes

    Chef Adam Hegsted has closed the Cellar, but has other irons in the fire
    • Jan 18, 2017
  • More »

Most Commented On

  • Partisan Pagans

    The political divide is even splintering Spokane's witches
    • Feb 2, 2017
  • Finding the Words

    The sounds of 8,000 people taking to the streets of Spokane
    • Jan 26, 2017
  • More »

Readers also liked…

  • Blind Faith
  • Blind Faith

    In a vacant lot by the railroad tracks, an unlikely friendship is found
    • Jan 7, 2016
  • Small Towns 2015: Don't Turn Left
  • Small Towns 2015: Don't Turn Left

    In Priest River, more has stayed the same than has changed
    • Aug 5, 2015

© 2017 Inlander
Website powered by Foundation