Schedule a guided group tour to understand how Pewabic evolved from an innovative early 20th-century pottery to a contemporary 21st-century studio.
Your Pewabic docent will lead you through our past and present, beginning with a look at our historic exhibit, Journey of a Pioneering Spirit: The Life of Mary Chase Perry Stratton along with early Pewabic pieces in our Museum. You’ll also see the workings of today’s pottery – with a walk through our Fabrication Studio, where you can watch our artisans create Pewabic wares from start to finish. Finally, you’ll have an opportunity to peruse our Gallery of Studio Artists, which contains the finest in contemporary ceramic work by over 70 North American artists. Demonstrations are often available.
Journey of a Pioneering Spirit
In the Stratton Gallery you will find Journey of a Pioneering Spirit: the Life of Mary Chase Perry Stratton, a permanent exhibit that celebrates Pewabic’s innovative founder. As you view Mary’s original works, notice the exceptional glazes – the result of her tireless experimentation with the glazed surface – and you will get a sense of the progressive spirit that drove the pottery from the beginning.
Through the museum’s narrative of Pewabic’s history – with historic images, including those of Stratton at work – you’ll learn about the pottery’s evolution from a groundbreaking Arts and Crafts workshop to a contemporary 21st century studio.
Our kiln room – where Stratton fired her legendary glazes – now houses 3 gas kilns that fire all of our wares up to 2300 degrees.
Here, you will see original machinery from 1909 used by Stratton. Today, we continue to use the equipment to mix and produce our clay. We produce approximately 1000 lbs.of clay per week. The materials for our clay recipes are sourced from quarries around the United States.
Pewabic’s signature matte and iridescent glazes are mixed here. Tiles are sprayed or hand painted. Hand thrown vessels and slip cast vessels are dipped and sprayed with glaze in this area as well.
Tile Pressing and Mold Making
Pewabic artisans handcraft our decorative tile as well as the field tile used for installations using plaster molds. All of the molds they use are produced by hand in our mold making room. The decorative tiles our artisans produce are available for purchase in our Pewabic Store.
Scheduling a Guided Tour
Guided tours must be scheduled in advance.
We’ll need to know how many people will be in your group, preferred dates for your tour, and contact information for your group leader. Tours are scheduled Monday–Saturday from 10am–4pm and Sunday from 12pm–3pm and last approximately one hour.
We can accommodate groups from two people to fifty.
Tours are suitable for all ages. Younger children should be accompanied by a parent or or other guardian. To make your visit more interactive, we recommend signing up for a Hands-on Workshop with your tour.
The minimum fee for a guided tour is $100.
The minimum fee covers your party up to the first 20 people. For additional participants, there is a per person surcharge of $5. Reservations and a deposit are required to schedule a tour. Please note that Pewabic cannot accommodate walk-in tour groups.
Please note that because Pewabic is a National Historic Landmark, we do not have elevators for access to the second floor spaces, including the Museum, Exhibition Galleries, and Education Studios.
For safety reasons, there is a limit of 10 self-guided tourists allowed in Fabrication at any one time. Please note that strollers are not permitted in the Fabrication area for safety reasons. Because Pewabic is a National Historic Landmark, our building has not been equipped with an elevator, which may limit viewing of the Museum and Exhibition areas for some guests.