"We believe ceramic art should be in an environment that allows participants an opportunity to create art, grow as an individual, expand on existing skills and strengthen ties with other artists no matter your skill level, age, income or background."
About the Potters
Birch and Debra Frew are the co-owners and creative minds behind Stoke Hole Pottery Downtown. They have a shared vision of bringing clay to the hands of other people for them to create and be inspired by the process of creating functional art that is both appealing to use and enjoyable to view. Birch and Debra have a strong connection with hand crafted pots and believe that there is nothing better than to use them in everyday life for your favourite beverage or serving food and they want to encourage others to do the same.
Artist Bio: Birch Hugh Frew
Birch’s love of clay began at a young age when his father encouraged him to attend Continuing Education at IUP with him. He concentrated on throwing while still in high school and studied at IUP with an emphasis on ceramics. With the support of his parents, Birch built a studio on the country site outside of Indiana, complete with kiln pads for electric, soda and wood fired kilns and successfully creates many pots there to this day. In 2005, a gallery was added to sell his production as well as for other artists who sell on consignment. In 2006 he married Debra, and helps raise his two daughters. He continues to make pots as much as he can around outside employment. The studio downtown will allow him to fulfill a passion of teaching the art of working with clay.
Artist Bio: Debra English Frew
Debra English Frew has had a strong interest in clay: its unique properties and its capabilities since her first introduction to it at Red Deer College in the 90’s. After RDC and attaining a BFA from NSCAD, she apprenticed with Internationally known artist, Nina Hole where they traveled to many countries building large scale sculpture kilns. While still in Denmark, she became the first technician and was a key player in the development of The International Ceramic Center in Skaelskor. Her cultural experiences during this time helped expand her diverse knowledge of ceramic art and design. After earning an MFA at Ohio University, she taught Ceramics in various Universities. In 2006, she married Birch Frew and while their raising their two daughters Rayna and Jadyn, helped manage their country studio offering classes and events for the community.