SIERRA LAMMI • [email protected] • The wood fire kiln is located in a shed next to the Watab River. At it’s first lighting, the kiln was originally dedicated to Sister Johanna Becker.

SIERRA LAMMI • [email protected] • In order to keep it hot, the kiln has to be continually stoked.

By Katarina Podewils
[email protected]

On the shores of the Watab River in Collegeville, a pottery kiln was continuously fired from Oct. 20-29.

Not to be mistaken with the kiln located at the St. John’s pottery studio, this kiln—dedicated to Sister Johanna Becker—is an outdoor wood fire kiln that demands 24-hour attention.

According to art professor Sam Johnson, the people who have helped maintain the kiln have come from all walks of life. Their backgrounds include local artists, carpenters, engineers and judges.

Richard Bresnahan, however, is the artist-in-residence at the St. John’s pottery studio who has maintained the kiln’s annual firing the last few years.

Bresnahan has used this space to fire various ceramic pieces such as pots, plates, vases and sculptures. One of the biggest sculptures this year being approximately three feet tall.

CSB also has a similar wood fire kiln in the Benedicta Arts Center (BAC) that will be firing this upcoming week.

Aside from local artists, students in ceramics classes will maintain and utilize this kiln while it is fired. Like the Watab kiln, it will be continuously fired for only several days too.

Students interested in seeing the Watab kiln being lit can see it next fall.

Richard Bresnahan, the artist-in-residence at St. John’s pottery studio, helped organize the wood fire kiln lighting ceremony. Crowding around in a circle, members in the community were excited about the lighting.