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Pottery & Ceramics Shops In The San Francisco Bay Area

Apr 14

Heath Ceramics in Sausalito, founded in 1948 by Edith Heath and reintroduced in 2003 by Catherine Bailey and Robin Petravic, is the place to go for high-quality ceramics.

Heath, located in Sausalito, is the go-to for ceramic excellence, from Yves Behar's Canopy kitchen and bathrooms to Alice Waters' Chez Panisse tables.

In the aftermath of Heath's beauty and legacy, we chose a few more Bay Area-based ceramicists whose small-batch bowls, vases, and wall art deserve equal attention.

However, not all of these artists will follow in Heath's footsteps as a potter who later became a tableware manufacturer. They've all left a trail of unique perspectives and meticulous attention to detail, however.

A few ceramicists in the Bay Area are worth keeping an eye on, particularly during the holiday season. Ceramics are sold at a number of brick-and-mortar establishments.

Colleen Hennessey's clay sculptures

Colleen Hennessey, a Mendocino-based ceramicist, spent 15 years as a chef at Los Angeles restaurants (Lucques, Campanile, Canelé) before focusing on kitchen ceramics. Her art has been featured in a variety of journals and magazines, as well as major restaurants in the region.

Kris Ceramik (Kris Ceramic)

This French designer living in San Francisco isn't happy with merely making ornamental bowls and vases. This artist's conceptual works span from large-scale sculptures to eccentric flower arrangements. Currently one of the most intriguing ceramic voices on the planet.

Mel Rice's ceramics

Mel Rice moved to San Francisco after earning a bachelor's degree in baking and culinary arts in New York. She established her own line of ceramics inspired by the ocean's views, scents, and sounds after eight years of studying and working in the pottery studio at San Francisco City College. Her compositions are clean and minimal. They're downright risqué in some circumstances. Rice's work may be purchased online or in a small micro shop on Valencia Street, just across from Amnesia, where he employs methods such as spatter and Mishima (a Korean pottery technique of coating items with celadons).

Sarah Kersten

One more gourmet has been added to the mix. Sarah Kersten's work often features high-fired stoneware. "All of my ideas respond to genuine needs, desires that I've experienced in my own kitchen, or requests that friends and chefs with whom I've worked have told me," Kersten adds. Because I take my time and attention on the form, size, and overall feel of a piece, it may take up to a year for me to get it exactly right. Her splatterware sculptures will liven up any area that has been reduced to a state of minimalist excess.

"Cuong Ta" Ceramist Cuong Ta's work is motivated by his career as a math teacher and contains patterns and geometric motifs. "I'm still drawn to look into the relationship between boundary and flow, the tension between positive and negative space," Ta says. His art has a broad variety of sizes and richer hues.

Sara Paloma

Sara Paloma started working with clay in college as part of a requirement for an art education degree, and she was inspired by architecture, geology, beachcombing, and industrial design. She acquired a liking for x-large pottery during that course, which has turned into a full-time career. Since relocating to the Bay Area in 2003, Paloma's has been producing stoneware containers for galleries and design shops around the nation. A 2013 series of vases and bowls for Restoration Hardware was one of their most significant efforts.

Rae Dunn's motivation is Wabisabi (acceptance of imperfection and transience), and her work concentrates on the beauty of imperfection. Dunn's ceramics are recognized for their innovative use of text and aviary-themed patterns that predate the Portlandia sketch, such as her "Salt of the Earth" salt cellar and her animated bird dish.

Clay, MM

Mary Mar Keenan, a ceramic artist, founded MM Clay in Hayes Valley, which specializes in handmade tableware with an emphasis on textures, notably grooves and indentations. Stuart Brioza's The Progress, the James Beard Award-winning chef's restaurant, was her most recent effort. MM Clay's tableware has been featured in Food and Wine, Remodelista, Saveur, and other notable restaurants (A16, WildHark, and Octavia, among others).

Gerhard's ceramics

Gerhard Ceramics manufactures some of the world's most stunning and appealing pieces, despite their deceptive simplicity. The matte and gloss glazed finishes on these handmade sculptures are typically available in white or black, however they have minor faults. "These differences and flaws are valued and accepted," says Gerhard.


Sasinun Kladpetch experimented with materials like as clay, soil, plaster, concrete, and plants to "illustrate the coherence of beauty." Her creations are designed to be admired rather than handled. However, they are fantasy notions. It's just stunning.

Sarah Duyer

From glazed mugs that resemble desert landscapes to a teapot that sprouts crab claws, Sarah Duyer's work is full of awful humor and wit. She has developed a broad range of objects, from simple and beautiful tableware to hideous ring plates. Her "Rest In Pizza" ceramic coffin pins are very appealing.


Ceramic cups are arranged on shelves and drawers by color

Dion\sOakland-based Jay and Rie Dion, a married couple who met in graduate school at California College of the Arts, manage one of San Francisco's most popular coffee shops. Since its inception in 2011, SightGlass, FourBarrel Coffee, and The Mill have all featured their work. They also produced a pair of glazed, blue-hued tumblers as part of their relationship with Unionmade.