Collaboration and investigation represent two important aspects of Three Rivers Clay Works creative process. Our work, based on textures found within our built environment and our own custom Brereton Avenue series, demands a creative and deliberate approach that explores new material possibilities while pushing us to develop new designs. Our collaborations with culinary artists and industry professionals affords us both the ability to test, encourage and promote qualities not ordinarily found within the realm of functional objects. All great things are a negotiation. In all scenarios, the point of creating ceramics is to push new concepts and encourage contemplation surrounding what we are exposed to and what we are able to make.
Survey: Pittsburgh is a textural journey through the streets and neighborhoods of the city that we call home. Unique among 19th- early 20th century cities, Pittsburgh was at its most architecturally grandiose during a time which saw modern methods of steel-frame construction meet older crafts such as stone-masonry and architectural ceramic design. As the 21st century dawns and building budgets no longer have room for such minute details we risk losing access to some of the most powerful elements of American city-craft over the last 100 years. In a small effort to bring attention to the state of the future of our built environment, Three Rivers Clay Works have collected textures from many of our most cherished buildings to create a line of custom tableware and to create sculptural pieces which draw attention to the details that are rarely noticed yet are a part of our everyday.
Duncan Street Dinners
The interaction between ceramic and culinary design should challenge and surprise-- ideally, and often, to the delight of both potter and chef. Beginning with an inauspicious introduction at a Strip District barbeque, the potters of Three Rivers Clay Works teamed up with two chefs and a bartender who had recently begun hosting exploratory dinners at their home on Duncan St. in Pittsburgh's Lawarenceville neighborhood. As their menus challenged traditional restaurant methodologies, they sought plates that would similarly challenge them to think differently about the food they made. After several meetings discussing both food and aesthetics, we designed this series.
One-of-a-kind offerings from the artists of Three Rivers Clay Works, the combined 30 plus years of making ceramic objects are highlighted in this collection that offers experimental and often complicated construction techniques. These are our most rare pieces-- each unique and not replicable.
Inspired by both the history and recent changes in Pittsburgh's aesthetic, the Brereton Avenue line pays homage to the angles, craftsmanship, and theoretical design of our city's heritage while also embracing the sleek minimalism that defines the new era of the 3rd Renaissance. Designed in-house and cast in porcelain, the clean lines and hard angles allow us to play outside of the traditional boundaries of handmade items without losing the individuality of each piece.