Pieces from Pincu Pottery in Bryson City, North Carolina
Silvia Ferrari Palmer

Handcrafted North Carolina Pottery

November 20, 2017

Pottery is an inseparable part of the history and culture of the Appalachian territory in the westernmost part of North Carolina. We met numerous local artisans on our quest for exquisitely crafted ceramics.

Salvaterra Pottery

Pottery from Salvaterra Pottery in Weaverville, North Carolina Salvaterra Pottery

Sue Salvaterra Hintz has a studio in Weaverville, a charming town 10 miles north of Asheville. She primarily sells her work through local galleries, but visits to her basement studio can be arranged. Her specialty is functional pieces such as serving bowls, dishes, mugs and ceramic cabinetry knobs. You can choose from four glaze combinations: “Smoky,” a matte blend of cream, light blue and rust; “Green,” with hues of teal and white, and a streak of raspberry; “Moss,” a mix of marbled browns, with tones of green and blue; and “Sky,” a variety of blue tones.

Salvaterra Pottery
30 Cole Road, Weaverville, NC 28787. Tel. (828) 658-0684

Pincu Pottery

A tray from Pincu Pottery in Bryson City, North Carolina Robert Batey Photography

Potter Elise Willa Pincu Delfield describes her exemplary creations as “inspired by nature, made for use.” After the first firing of the red clay pottery, she meticulously decorates each piece. Her shop in Bryson City, near Cherokee, is an eminently worthwhile stop. Delfield is also a pottery instructor and offers classes.

Pincu Pottery
80 Highway 28 South, Bryson City, NC 28713. Tel. (828) 488-0480

Paradox Pottery

Pottery from Paradox Pottery in Horse Shoe, North Carolina Paradox Pottery

Launched in 1971 by artist Jim Whalen, Paradox Pottery makes a variety of pots using a complex process: His creations are wheel-thrown, burnished and fired in two stages, salt and sawdust, which create the colorations. Between those firings, he uses wax resist. Paradox does not sell utilitarian pottery — Whalen’s wares are not meant to hold water — but instead makes works of art to own and admire.

Paradox Pottery
90 Spring Farm Drive, Horse Shoe, NC 28742. Tel. (828) 890-0525

Hilton Pottery

The importance of promoting and preserving centuries-old techniques is highlighted at Hilton, a pottery business founded at the end of the Civil War and now run by a fifth-generation descendant. Set on a farm in Newton, this family-run establishment has fostered a network for other Catawba Valley potters by hosting a yearly event at which local artists can sell their wares.

Hilton Pottery
4026 Old State Road, Newton, NC 28658. Tel. (704) 462-1304

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