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$2,580 pledged of $14,000 goal
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By The Village Potters
$2,580 pledged of $14,000 goal
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About this project

What is a Kazegama Kiln?

The Kazegama complete with its trailer (later on you’ll find out why the wheels are integral to our mission)
The Kazegama complete with its trailer (later on you’ll find out why the wheels are integral to our mission)

The Kazegama (Japanese for Wind Kiln) is a simple rectangular box design using natural gas and forced air to fire. Wood ash is added into the kiln to create beautiful wood fired results.

Detail of wood-fired vessel by Karen Dubois
Detail of wood-fired vessel by Karen Dubois

Wood fire creates surface on pots like nothing else can. The wood ash moves through the kiln on the “wind” and melts on the surface of the pots. 

It is the most exciting form of firing. Why? because you never know what you are going to get. The elements of wind, wood and fire create the palette.  

The inventor of the Kazegama kiln, Steve Davis, is sharing his plans with us and generously offered help as we need it during construction and firing.

​"Wood is my favorite firing technique! I can't wait to share this amazing kiln with our community" says Village Potter Karen Dubois (who will head up the construction project with Village Potter co-owner George Rolland).

We're making 200 Mugs for the new Kiln - reserve yours at the $60 donation level  and help us build this kiln!
We're making 200 Mugs for the new Kiln - reserve yours at the $60 donation level and help us build this kiln!

Is this Cool or what?

Actually, it’s not cool at all—it’s 2340 degrees of fiery goodness!
Actually, it’s not cool at all—it’s 2340 degrees of fiery goodness!

We already have 9 kilns at the Village Potters... and you might be wondering why we need another...

Here’s why the Kazegama really IS cool—

Atmosphere in a kiln is a major player in determining the look of a pot. With wood, ash hits the pots and dances across the surface leaving mystifying and unexpected beautiful trails.

At The Village Potters, our mission is to inspire, nurture and create. 

With this kiln, we will inspire potters to make wonderful pots and then release them to the fire.

We will nurture the emerging potter (maybe that’s you!) by offering them an opportunity to experience all firing atmospheres, and help them explore their personal aesthetic. And then we all will create and share the experience together with each of our pots.

With the help of your pledge today, we will use the new kiln to expand and build our community to include:

  • New work by all of the Village Potters including collaborations 
  • We will have a new and innovative kiln on the eastern part of the US
  • Use the kiln when mentoring the emerging potter through our Mentoring program
  • Community Firings with regional potters, and public kiln openings with teaching and discussion to the public
  • Educational Outreach through organizations like the Southern Highland Craft Guild (our Teaching Center is a member)
  • Provide increased demonstrations and talks with the local schools (which we already do)
  • Teach the history of pottery that began with wood and continues today.

Education

For your $300 pledge—take a class with us and make something to fire in the Kazegama Kiln!
For your $300 pledge—take a class with us and make something to fire in the Kazegama Kiln!

The Village Potters Collective began four years ago—birthed from Sarah Wells Rolland’s desire for a creative, collaborative community that would not only nurture working artists but allow for the mentorship and development of emerging artists.

The Village Potters (l-r): Melanie Robertson, Judi Harwood, Dearing Davis, Sarah Wells Rolland, Karen Dubois, Lori Theriault
The Village Potters (l-r): Melanie Robertson, Judi Harwood, Dearing Davis, Sarah Wells Rolland, Karen Dubois, Lori Theriault

 The Village Potters has grown to a Collective of six professional artists, including one Apprentice and two studio assistants.

Our newly launched Independent Study and Mentoring (IS/M) Program will invite up to 20 emerging artists to take steps toward their own creative development.

The Kazegama wood-ash kiln is an integral part of our growing kiln family. 

With 6 electric kilns, 2 downdraft gas-fired kilns and a Raku kiln, this addition will make it possible for us to experiment creatively with our students who desire the look of the traditional wood fired pot.

Firing Up The Community

Several rewards (listed to the right) include taking a class with us, or even attending your own private workshop for up to 4 people.
Several rewards (listed to the right) include taking a class with us, or even attending your own private workshop for up to 4 people.

 Wood kilns have a legacy thousands of years old. Potters, friends and neighbors have been coming together to stoke the fire and stir the ash of a wood kiln.

The Kazegama is a contemporary kiln design but we will keep the priceless age old tradition of shared firing.

The unloading of the kiln and discovering the random and beautiful results in the firing is a sharing experience like none other. It’s a celebration.

Taking Our Show on the Road

Building the Kazegama on a trailer gives us the unique opportunity to share the kiln with schools, groups and organizations without their own access to a kiln and professional instruction.

We invite you to become a part of our Village Potters Community.

If you have had your eye on that special piece for your home, now is your time! Your investment now is not only your opportunity to take that cherished item home, but also to help us build our community and mentor aspiring potters in our new Independent Study and Mentoring Program.

Rewards

To show our appreciation for your support, we have hand-selected creations by our resident potters (photos below are representative of style), as well as selected class and workshop rewards so that you can fulfill your own dream of learning a new skill and passion.

It’s a win-win—you get great pottery creations for your home, AND at the same time, you become a cherished member of our community. 

Ornaments 

It may be hot now, but it’s never too early to think about snow...your $25 pledge will help us build the Kazegama AND just may help you finish up your Christmas shopping super early.

Teddy Bear!

Teddy is waiting for the Kazegama! Pledge $300 or more to take this Teddy Bear home with you (by Village Potter Karen Dubois)
Teddy is waiting for the Kazegama! Pledge $300 or more to take this Teddy Bear home with you (by Village Potter Karen Dubois)

Can you hear the beat?

March to the beat of your own drum! Djembe (left) Talking Drum (right) hand-crafted by Judi Harwood. Take one home for a pledge of $250
March to the beat of your own drum! Djembe (left) Talking Drum (right) hand-crafted by Judi Harwood. Take one home for a pledge of $250

Mugs!

A wonderful assortment of mugs by The Village Potters
A wonderful assortment of mugs by The Village Potters

Whether you choose a new mug hand-selected for you by The Village Potters from the first Kazegama firings, or you choose one yourself from your favorite potter, you’ll be sure to find a new favorite mug among the rewards listed to the right...

Bowls and more bowls

Altered (left) and Carved (right) bowls by Sarah Wells Rolland (for a $250 pledge one of these can be yours!)

We thank you for being part of the greater “Village” and sowing seed into our Kazegama “wind” kiln. 

The Mighty Oak

This Exquisite Signature Piece by Sarah Wells Rolland is yours for a pledge of $900 or more
This Exquisite Signature Piece by Sarah Wells Rolland is yours for a pledge of $900 or more

These are just a few of the many rewards awaiting you—

We invite you to take a minute to search the list of rewards to the right and find your treasure! 

A heartfelt thank you once again from all of The Village Potters: Sarah Wells Rolland, Karen Dubois, Lori Theriault, Judi Harwood, Melanie Robertson, and Dearing Davis.  www.thevillagepotters.com

Budget

Our $14,000 goal will allow us to:

  • Purchase the trailer
  • Buy all the materials to build the kiln including Zirconia ceramic fiber, metal for frame, hard and soft insulating brick, kiln furniture, burners and 2 propane tanks
  • Have the frame welded and manufactured with a pulley system to raise the lid
  • Promote and establish the first two community firings with a video created to tell the story
  • Make preparations for off-site workshops
  • City permits
  • Engineer reports

Any funds raised above our $14,000 goal will go into the equipment and curriculum development for our Independent Study/Mentoring program.

Risks and challenges

Challenge is part of the every day life of a potter.

Any and all projects include challenges, and we are well-prepared for them.

We have:
• Experience with navigating city regulations and permitting. We’ve already talked with the city and understand that this kiln will fit into their parameters.
• An engineer on board to make any design reports to the city they require for approval.
• The willing ear of the original designer of the Kazegama to help us through construction and first firings
• Endless passion and enthusiasm

Again, we all thank you so much for being a part of this project and a member of our Village Potters Community!

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Support this project

  1. Select this reward

    Pledge $10 or more About $10

    Thank you for your support. Every little bit helps!
    You will receive a "one of a kind" thank you note from all of us!

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    Pledge $20 or more About $20

    From the first firings of the Kazegama: a beautiful, hand-crafted mini-ornament.

    Includes shipping.

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    Pledge $25 or more About $25

    From the first firings of the Kazegama: our most popular snowflake ornament.

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    Pledge $45 or more About $45

    From the first firings of the Kazegama: a wheel-thrown small tea bowl by VP Lori Theriault.

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    Pledge $60 or more About $60

    From the first firings of the Kazegama: a hand-crafted mug by one of The Village Potters (and we get to pick!).

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    Pledge $60 or more About $60

    A beautiful mug by Sarah Wells Rolland, in her classic Earth Tone glaze.

    Includes shipping.

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    Pledge $60 or more About $60

    A wheel-thrown mug by Lori Theriault, in her 'tree' design.

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    Pledge $60 or more About $60

    A beautiful, hand-thrown mug by Judi Harwood, with the Village Potter swirl.

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    Pledge $60 or more About $60

    A Painted Face Mug by Melanie Robertson.

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    Pledge $60 or more About $60

    A whimsical, handbuilt tray by Melanie Robertson.

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    Pledge $60 or more About $60

    From the Kazegama Kiln: a small (5") stein mug, hand built by Karen Dubois.

    Includes shipping.

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    Pledge $75 or more About $75

    From the first firings of the Kazegama: a relief-carved 'Doodle Cup' by Lori Theriault.

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    Pledge $75 or more About $75

    From the Kazegama Kiln: Enjoy a cool brew in this large (7" tall) hand built stein by Karen Dubois.

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    Pledge $95 or more About $95

    From the Kazegama Kiln: Small (4 1/2") vase, hand built by Karen Dubois.

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    Pledge $120 or more About $120

    A stunning Raku vessel by Judi Harwood.

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    Pledge $120 or more About $120

    From the Kazegama Kiln: A small tripod vase (6 1/2"), with delicate surface design that will be greatly enhanced with the wood ash, hand built by Karen Dubois.

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    Pledge $120 or more About $120

    From the Kazegama Kiln: a small (7"), sweet, chubby, slab-constructed panel vase with a circle-pattern design by Karen Dubois.

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    Pledge $175 or more About $175

    From the Kazegama Kiln: a Medium (9") Tripod Vase, a larger version of the other tripod vase, also with delicate, shaved surface design waiting for the ash, hand built by Karen Dubois.

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    Pledge $250 or more About $250

    A 9" Djembe drum by Judi Harwood
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    Pledge $250 or more About $250

    A 9" Talking Drum by Judi Harwood

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    Pledge $250 or more About $250

    At this level, we will send you a beautiful Altered Bowl by Sarah Wells Rolland.

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    Pledge $250 or more About $250

    At this level you'll receive one of Sarah Wells Rolland's exquisite Carved Bowls.

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    Pledge $300 or more About $300

    This reward is great for new or existing students of pottery: you'll join one of our six-week wheel classes, and you'll be able to put two pieces into the Kazegama!

    Pieces to be selected with Instructor approval.
    Must be in Asheville to claim this reward.
    First available firing will be in November, which means the class would begin in September/October. Class may be scheduled (on availability) at a later date as well.

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    Pledge $300 or more About $300

    From the Kazegama Kiln: A darling 6 1/2" hand built Teddy Bear with stitching detail that will become a treasured family heirloom. Lovingly created by Karen Dubois.

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    Pledge $350 or more About $350

    Another reward that's great for existing or new pottery enthusiasts: you'll join an eight-week hand building class, and you'll be able to put two pieces into the Kazegama!

    Pieces to be selected with Instructor approval.
    Must be in Asheville to claim this reward.
    First available firing will be in November, which means the class would begin in September/October. Class may be scheduled (on availability) at a later date as well.

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    Pledge $450 or more About $450

    Create Your Own Workshop! Enjoy a 2-hour workshop for up to four people, including a finished take-away!

    Workshop will take place in Asheville.

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    Pledge $450 or more About $450

    From the Kazegama Kiln: a large (18"), hand built vase with a "Rose trellis" design, by Karen Dubois.

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    Pledge $600 or more About $600

    From the Kazegama Kiln: A large (14" high), lidded bottle, slab constructed by Karen Dubois, featuring a beautiful "starry night" design on the side panel.

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    Pledge $900 or more About $900

    The exquisite "Mighty Oak", by Sarah Wells Rolland. This stunning signature piece will be a beautiful reminder of our eternal gratitude!

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    Pledge $1,200 or more About $1,200

    At this level, you will receive "Offering" a graceful tall pitcher (approx. 24" tall) by Sarah Wells Rolland, in one of her classic glazes.

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    Pledge $1,500 or more About $1,500

    A Collaboration piece by Sarah Wells Rolland and Lori Theriault. Sarah will throw the piece, and Lori will carve it in a design specially created to suit the Kazegama kiln and for the best wood ash results!

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Funding period

- (30 days)