Pleasant Hill Pottery
Pleasant Hill Pottery, located on 10 acres just outside of Eugene, Oregon, was founded in 2000 by Tom Rohr and Kathryn Finnerty. PHP was purchased in 2012 by Jesse Jones and Lauren Sommers. The pottery is home to four wood-fired kilns. The first to be constructed on the property - a 60 cubic foot two-chambered wood, biodiesel and salt kiln nicknamed Pepino - was built in 2001. A 110cf Anagama (The Tomagama) followed in 2007. A 30cf wood/biodiesel soda kiln was built in 2012, and a 25cf wood/biodiesel train kiln followed in 2014. Pictures of these kilns and the beautiful surfaces that they produce can be found here. Call, email, or message for a tour or more information.
Growing up in Corvallis, Oregon on a small farm, I learned to work with my hands fixing go-karts, restoring cars and building tree forts. In high school, I took every industrial arts offering available, from welding to woodshop to ceramics. With clay the attraction was immediate and I continue to be drawn to the process of combining common raw materials, creativity, and fire to create objects of beauty, utility and permanence.
I create a variety of tableware and sculptural pieces using wheel–thrown and hand built techniques. I work primarily through a subtractive process, throwing my pieces and then trimming and carving away the clay, leaving the finished surface to interact with the flame and ash produced during the wood-firing process. My work, intended for daily use, is a canvas that serves to record the energy, both subtle and dramatic, of the firing. I am inspired to wood fire not just for the results, but for the community - it is immensely rewarding to work with a dedicated group of artists with a common goal.
I have taught wheel-throwing courses for over a decade at both Clay Space, located in Eugene, Oregon, and at the Oregon State University Craft Center. I began wood firing in 2005 with Tom at Pleasant Hill Pottery.
During the week, I work for the City of Springfield as a civil engineer, focusing on stormwater and habitat restoration projects.
My resume can be found here.
Ceramics Monthly - Studio Visit Article - "Originally published in January 2017 issue of Ceramics Monthly, pages 28-31, http://www.ceramicsmonthly.org . Copyright, The American Ceramic Society. Reprinted with permission."
Ceramics Monthly - Waste Vegetable Oil Firing Article - "Originally published in April 2017 issue of Ceramics Monthly, pages 22-23, http://www.ceramicsmonthly.org . Copyright, The American Ceramic Society. Reprinted with permission.
Castable Burner Plans (PDF)