Seasoned Richmond potter launches artsy open house

Seasoned Richmond potter launches artsy open house
Artist Paula Ross’ backyard studio is one of Richmond's many hidden, off-the-beaten-path treasures.

By Zach Chouteau

There’s nothing the ‘Rich Life’ segment enjoys more than discovering the city’s hidden, off-the-beaten-path treasures—and that certainly applies to artist Paula Ross’ backyard studio.

The seasoned potter began opening up the rustic, vine-covered cottage to the public for visits back in April for viewings of her earthenware creations and demonstrations of her at work.  Tucked away at 1934 Santa Clara St., in Richmond’s Annex neighborhood, her artistic open-houses take place the first Saturday of each month, and are worth seeking out for a drop-in.

“It’s gone wonderfully so far,” Ross told us on the first Saturday of July during a tour of the cozy cottage, explaining that her specialty in the field is low-fired earthenware, though she’s done other pottery as well. She’s been practicing the art for about three decades and her passion and dedication are obvious.

“That’s my identity—I’m a potter,” she remarked, while sharing a past that includes a Master of Fine Arts (MFA) from the Pratt Institute and time spent studying in London. Ross’ work has also appeared in galleries all over the state, including the Richmond Art Center, and her creations have also been showcased in Lark Books. She said she’s happy to talk shop with any other potters in the area, or anyone who just appreciates art.

Ross is originally from New York, but has called Richmond home for about 20 years. While she enjoys her work deeply in general, one particular item is undoubtedly at the top of her list.

“Something I’m so drawn to, that’s really been passion—I really love pots,” she enthused.

Ross still sells her creations to galleries in Berkeley and Oakland, and also has plenty of wonderful works on sale during her open houses of course. But whether you’re shopping, talking shop or just into exploring a new Richmond offering, you’ll get a warm welcome from the polished potter.

You can find out more at


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