GoFundMe launched for Richmond potter and educator

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GoFundMe launched for Richmond potter and educator
Colleen Garland selling her creations at the Richmond Art Center's Holiday Craft Fair (Photo via GoFundMe)

By Kathy Chouteau

A Richmond ceramic artist and educator has launched a GoFundMe campaign to help her expand her business by relocating into a private live/work studio space in the historic Voulkos Building in West Berkeley.

Colleen Garland’s passion for clay was first sparked at Contra Costa College more than a decade ago and she has been “learning, working and growing in ceramics ever since,” she said on her GoFundMe page. “I truly believe my calling is in pottery and teaching,” she added, noting that the new space will give her more room to work and grow her business.

The artist said that “being an artist during the pandemic has been tough financially” and that she’s “looking to [her] wonderful community to support [her] dreams.”

Site of Colleen Garland’s new studio in the Voulkos Building. Pic courtesy of the Berkeley Historical Plaque Project (Photo via GoFundMe)

Garland said on her fundraising page that her future plans include offering additional one-on-one wheel throwing classes, making planters for wholesale to local plant stores and continuing to make one-of-a-kind pots to sell at markets.

“I also want to take time this year to make special pieces to submit to shows,” she said. In the past, Garland has participated in the Richmond Art Center’s Holiday Craft Fair.

The community has responded favorably to Garland’s appeal by helping her raise the $2,000 she needs prior to March 1 to cover the costs associated with moving into the building that was once the home of ceramic sculptor Peter Voulkos’ former studio. However, she hopes to raise additional funding to cover a few months’ rent as she gets her studio up-and-running in the new space.

To date, Garland’s GoFundMe has raised $4,882 of its $5,000 goal. Check it out here.

Examples of Colleen Garland’s work.