Waterworks Visual Arts Center

Providing diverse opportunities in the arts for all people through exhibitions, education, & outreach programs.



Hand & Wheel Pottery with Brent Smith 

Ages 15-Adult; Six Tuesdays, Oct. 8, 15, 22, 29, Nov. 5 & 12, 6:30-9pm, plus Open Studio on Saturday, Nov. 12, 10 am-2p m

Limit 8 students

This class is full. Call 704-636-1882 to be added to the waiting list.

Learn the art of pottery-making in this in-depth, exciting 6-week class series. Students of every level will explore sculpting, hand building, and throwing techniques on the potter’s wheel as well as various surface treatments and glazes. Students new to pottery will learn the basics of clay; while more experienced students will develop and refine their own individual styles.



Saturday, October 12, 2019 / 10-11 am

Toddler Time with Teddy Bears

Ages 18 months-3 years; Limit 8 students

Parent or guardian must accompany child.

Instructor:  Debbie Hoffman


Children will make art creations alongside our favorite stuffed toy, the Teddy Bear.  Learn where the Teddy Bear comes from and make teddy bear masks, honey bear cloud dough, and enjoy a teddy bear parade through the galleries. Come dressed for messy art fun!


Spring Toddler Time 1.5-3 yr olds
Attendee Name:

Saturday, November 9, 2019 / 10 am-12:30 pm

Crazy Creations

Ages 4-6 years; Limit 10 students

Instructor:  Debbie Hoffman


Young artists will create unusual creatures and masks using clay, paint and fun embellishments. Give your critter a name, and paint a habitat for it. Take it home for creative play. And, of course it wouldn’t be Messy Art without making colorful slime!


Leaf it to Me

Ages 7-12; Limit 10 students

Instructor:  Brenda Gariepy


From gratitude comes joy! Children will love considering what they are thankful for, and creating a beautiful Gratitude Leaf to hang on a branch or single ornament holder. Then, on to making clay Leaf Dishes, textured with real leaf patterns. They’ll be fired and ready for pickup in time for your Thanksgiving celebration.


Crazy Creations - Nov. 9, 2019
Birthdate mm/dd/yy

Leaf it to Me - Nov. 9, 2019
Birthdate mm/dd/yy

Saturday, December 7, 2019 / 10:30 am-12:30 pm

Family Clay Day

All ages are welcome; parent or guardian must accompany children.

Instructor:  Joana Suttle (Jojo)


Looking for an opportunity to spend quality time together as a family?  Come play in the clay and create ceramic ornaments or menorahs, as your tradition leads you. This class is appropriate for all ages, as we’ll have plenty of helpful hands for the children so that adults can create their own pieces, too.


Family Clay Day - Dec. 7, 2019
Name of Adult
Name of Child

Additional Family Members
Name(s) of Add'l Adult(s)
Name(s) of Add'l Child(ren)

in order of their class listing.

BRENT SMITH is a 1993 East Carolina graduate who works as a full-time potter.  He works in his studio and showroom behind his farmhouse in Rowan County, where he continually experiments with forms, clays, glazes, and textures.  He sometimes digs his own natural clay.  Brent is known for his lidded jars, and large wheel-thrown pots.

Brent has been teaching youth and adult hand and wheel classes at Waterworks for over a decade and a half. In recognition and appreciation for his contributions to the visual arts in Rowan County and educational programming, Brent was the 2014 recipient of the Waterworks’ Lucille P. and Edwin O. Norvell Family Art of Teaching Award.


DANIELLE “Dani” IRIS debuted at Waterworks this summer, teaching Landscape Weaving in the Summer ARTventures program.  Dani received her BFA in painting and fiber from Appalachian State University.  She is the 2018 recipient of the  Windgate Fellowship, a grant awarded to recent graduate artists to help kick start their career.

Dani is passionate about all the ingredients she uses in making her art, from the paper she paints on to the pigments she paints with, and the yarns she weaves with. All natural, and many hand-made, are her preferences.



DEBBIE HOFFMAN is retired from the Rowan-Salisbury school system after eighteen years working as an Exceptional Children teacher.  She taught dance for over forty-five years. Debbie graduated from Rowan-Cabarrus Community College with an Associate of Arts degree.

Debbie was the recipient of Waterworks’ 2009 Lucile P. and Edwin O. Norvell Family Art of Teaching Award for her significant and selfless contributions and outstanding work in art education through Waterworks’ children’s educational programming. She returns to Waterworks for her thirteenth year.


BRENDA GARIEPY studied at Alfred University, New York, and has teaching experience in NY, PA, and NC.  She currently teaches art in the Rowan-Salisbury Elementary Schools.

For over a decade, Brenda has specialized in teaching hand-built and wheel-thrown pottery classes at Waterworks. She was a 2017 recipient of the Waterworks’ Lucille P. and Edwin O. Norvell Family Art of Teaching Award for her significant and generous contributions, and outstanding work in art education through Waterworks and its educational studio programs.


JOANA SUTTLE (Jojo) has been teaching art in the Carolinas for the last decade. A rebel at heart, Jojo works through dichotomies, merging charcoals, inks, acrylics and oils into expressive strokes and visceral figures. When not working in the studio and classroom, Joana spends time with her family, being outdoors, and enjoying music.

Waterworks is so excited to have Jojo on board as an instructor in the clay studio. She taught two Summer ARTventures clay classes for 6-8 year olds, that filled up almost immediately. Jojo merged fun-to-imagine subjects (food and animals) with important clay making techniques, so her students are engaged, and learning a lot at the same time.



Check out additional adult class options on the ARTpops page!