High-Fire Hawaii’s ceramics studios are located on the Big Island Of Hawaii. Our Hilo studio is located along with High Fire Hawaii Gallery on Hilo’s bayfront. Our Hamakua Studio is located near our home north of Hilo. Perched on the slope of a cinder cone which marks the east rift zone of Mauna Kea (13,796 feet), with a clear view of the current volcanic activity at Kilauea, our Hamakua studio is an appropriate site for creating art from earth and fire. Our open-air facility is nestled in a lush tropical setting on land that has supported 6 generations of our family. Beyond our personal history, in ancient times the surrounding area was the site of a sacred bamboo grove. We are proud of the land and the history that encompass our studio. We find inspiration in the natural beauty and cultural legacy that surround us and we strive to incorporate this inspiration in all our work.
We offer a number of classes in hand-building and wheel throwing at our Big Island studios. In order to maximize the level of attention we can provide to each student space is very limited.
Our Hilo studio is our main teaching facility. Our student’s work is fired in an electric kiln to Cone 6 (2160 degrees Fahrenheit). The clays and glazes we provide are formulated to provide excellent results in this temperature range. Advanced students will have the opportunity to fire larger pieces in special workshops at our Hamakua studio.
At our Hamakua studio we fire our gallery pieces in a gas-fired updraft kiln we constructed ourselves to meet our specific needs. The majority of our pieces are fired to Cone 10 (2350 degrees Fahrenheit) in a reduced atmosphere. Firing in reduction is a process in which the kiln is deprived of oxygen at a critical point in the firing. This forces the intense combustion to strip oxygen molecules from the metallic oxides present in many of the glazes. The finished piece exhibits variations in color and depth that range from subtle to dramatic. Our careful attention to the selection of glaze, clay body and process results in exceptional examples of ceramic art.