Areas of Study

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Ceramics (ASCE)

Please note that not all courses are offered every semester. This listing is not considered authoritative. Please visit Access.SMU for authoritative course offerings including meeting times, professor, and more.

ASCE 1300: Introduction to Ceramics
This course introduces students to the discipline of ceramics through projects, readings, and field trips. The motto of the Ceramics area is panta rhei ("everything flows") because the deformation of matter & the flowing across disciplines determine what we make in ceramics. We engage the larger Dallas community by making pots for the annual "Empty Bowls" food bank benefit. Students will learn to use ceramic materials, to analyze the ceramics they produce and to judge them critically.

ASCE 3300: Intermediate Ceramtics
This course further engages the discipline of ceramics through projects, readings, and field trips. Because clay is formless, we also form independent projects, in which students may pursue a particular interest of their own. This could be for example to depict the human figure in ceramic, or to copy in clay an object that exists in another material, or to create a set of tableware in a particular style, or to use ceramic as a complement to artwork being made concurrently in other disciplines, such as painting, or to employ ceramics as a part of an installation. Prerequisite: ASCE 1300 or permission of instructor.

ASCE 3320: Sex, Drugs, & Rocks
Beyond their more common uses, pots have traditionally been used ritually and socially in conjunction with powerful substances and forces, which are often depicted in a pot’s form or surface decoration. Such practices continue today. Traditional and current uses of pots include Greek wares for gymnasia and bacchanalia, Chinese tea ware, Central American chocolate ware, North American diner ware, and South African brewery ware, as well as pots that celebrate bodily functions such as giving birth and pots that depict parts of the body gendered, sexualized, or related to reproduction. After studying these pots and their contexts, the ceramics of living artists particularly concerned with topics such as sex and drugs, and texts about various pots and their contents, students make their own interpretations by undertaking the ceramic process as an artificial geological process.

ASCE 3310, 5310: Special Topics in Ceramics
To be announced by the Division of Art. Prerequisite: ASCE 1300 or permission of instructor.

ASCE 5100, 5200, 5302: Directed Studies in Ceramics
Students may take one course per term only. Prerequisite: ASCE 3300.

ASCE 5300: Advanced Ceramics
Students refine their understanding of the discipline of ceramics based on their grasp of techniques and principles from the first two courses. Employing the fluid nature of ceramics to flow across disciplines, students select a common ground (for example, architecture, food service, or the human figure) and identify specific techniques (for example, printing, throwing, or painting) to accomplish primarily self-initiated projects of research and making. Prerequisite: ASCE 3300 or permission of instructor.

Areas of Study



Undergraduate Studies

Graduate Studies


General Studio (ASAG)

Ceramics (ASCE)

Drawing (ASDR)

Digital Hybrid Media (ASIM)

Photography (ASPH)

Printmaking (ASPR)

Painting (ASPT)

Sculpture (ASSC)


Faculty and Staff


Pollock Gallery

Art in Dallas

Travel Opportunities

Student Resources

Visiting Artist Lecture Series

Meadows Academy for Young Artists

Art History

Arts Management and Arts Entrepreneurship

Communication Studies

Creative Computation


Film and Media Arts