MFA Ceramics Facilities
The Ceramics program offers exceptional studio facilities, occupying 12,500 square feet of studio space on the 4th floor of the Star Store campus of UMass Dartmouth. The facility includes over 40 potters wheels, 3 slab rollers, extruders, ball mills, a dedicated slide and photo area, and a ceramics resource room that hold an extensive study collection, book and slide library. Available studios include 12 large 250-square foot individual studios for graduate students, individual studio spaces for all junior and senior level undergraduate students, and elective throwing and handbuilding studios for beginning classes.
The Clay Mixing Facility is well ventilated with state-of-the-art environmental dust collection system. It includes 2 clay mixers and a pug mill. The Ceramics program orders over 20 tons of raw clay materials annually. The Glaze Lab is complete with well stocked material bins, a large spray booth, stainless steel work tables, scales, and test kilns. A dust collection system provides for excellent ventilation when mixing materials. Additional equipment includes a sand blasting cabinet, a brick saw, and a welding unit.
The Plaster Room is well ventilated with point-source dust collection, blungers for terra cotta and porcelain slips, and casting tables with pumps. Marble counter tops line the facility for mold making, and a newly acquired 2.5 ton hydraulic RAM press. The Kiln Facility is a spacious 1,750-square-foot, well equipped studio housing 7 gas kilns including: 3 ALPINE kilns at 50, 30, and 16-cubic-feet, a 82-cubic-foot GEIL shuttle kiln, a 40-cubic-foot catenary arch kiln, a 24-cubic-foot sprung arch test kiln, and 30 cubic-foot SODA/SALT. There are 12 electric kilns of various capacities: a 28-cubic-foot FREDERICKSON shuttle and a 14-cubic-foot front loader, a number of SKUTT top loaders at the 11, 7, and 3-cubic-foot range. Test kilns are installed throughout the labs. We have recently built a small fast-fire Wood kiln on the Dartmouth campus, with plans to build a Masakazu Kusakabe designed, low emission Crossdraft Wood kiln. Our students continue to fire biannually with Emeritus Professor Chris Gustin, in his 400 cubic-foot Anagama in South Dartmouth.