Low Fired Ceramics – Barrel, Pit and Saggar Firing with Chris Dunn

Sunday 18 March  12 – 4pm

Sunday 25 March 10am – 4pm

Saturday 31 March 9am – 4pm

Sunday 1 April – 2pm

Suitable for:

  • anyone with at least 6 months experience in pottery

The aims of the workshop include:

  • Making work suitable for pit and barrel firing, including burnishing.
  • Constructing a pit, barrel or garbage bin kiln, especially one that can be taken home and use
  • Preparing work for firing,
  • Kiln firing and treatment of pots post-firing
  • Saggar and black firing included as an extension of pit and barrel firing.

For more information about Chris’s process see  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iof4xwRUW8s.

The workshops are experimental in that participants are encouraged to explore and apply their own ideas to all areas, for example suitable ceramic forms, clays, fuels, combustible materials, kilns and firing techniques. The aim is to advance our knowledge and skills.

As a resident potter Chris is making himself available at all times during his residency to work with workshop participants, and to talk to and help any Canberra Potters members interested in this area.

First workshop: Sunday 18 of March: Introduction to pit and barrel firing 12 – 4pm

Chris will explore with you

  • suitable clays and shapes – thrown and hand-built
  • preparation of work for low-fired bisque
    • making terra-sigillata
  • burnishing
  • bisque firing
  • collecting and preparing materials for firing effects
  • types of kilns and firing techniques – options to provide own materials or use club resources

Assignment: To make and prepare pieces for next workshop. A low fired bisque, @850 degrees, is included in the cost.


Second Workshop Sunday 25 March: Kiln Making 10am – 4pm

Demonstration and practical work: Chris will demonstrate–participants will work individually and in teams to make kilns.

Make a barrel kiln, garbage bin kiln and a brick pit kiln.

  • Options available for participants to make 44 gallon drum kilns and smaller garbage bin kilns
  • Involves cutting and shaping metal drums and bins
  • Demonstrating how to build a brick pit-firing kiln


Third Workshop Saturday 31 March: Easter Saturday 9 am – 4 pm or when firings are finished

Part 1: Saturday Morning

 Preparing work for barrel and pit firing

  • Preparing the work for the firing is time consuming. Each person will have several pieces to prepare and will bring materials for their own work, and for sharing.

 Part Two: Saturday afternoon

  • Stacking kilns
  • Firing kilns
  • Caring for kilns until fire subsides. It doesn’t take long to fire the kilns but they need to be left overnight to cool down before the pots can be removed.

 Sunday 1 Easter Sunday 2pm

  • Unloading kilns,
  • washing and polishing work
  • Cleaning up kilns

Credit Card Payment

Pay securely using your credit card.

Item Summary

Class  × 1 $480.00
Subtotal $480.00
Discount $0.00
Total $480.00 (includes $43.64 GST)