6866 Main St., Wilmington, NC 28405
910-679-4257 or 484-885-3037

Monday – Saturday 10am – 7pm
Sunday 12 – 6pm
& By Appointment

Traudi Thornton (1940-2023) – RAKU WARE

About Traudi Thornton (1940-2023) – RAKU WARE

Traudi Thornton
(April 4, 1940- March 30, 2023)
Master Ceramicist

Traudi was born in Czechoslovakia in 1940. She first studied music at Creighton University before studying ceramics with Henry Soreco at Creighton, the University of Nebraska at Omaha and raku in a workshop with Paul Soldner at the University of Nebraska at Omaha in 1972. She returned to Germany and joined a cooperative art community in which she lived and worked on ceramics.

Love precipitated her move to Wilmington in 1983. She once again built a ceramic studio and began teaching ceramics at the Community Art Center where she influenced many budding ceramists.

Traudi said, “Working with clay validates my existence. During the plastic state, the relationship is that of master and a much beloved pet. I tell the clay to stay and push it, but often I have to listen. We have a rhythm. Clay needs heat to be transferred to a hard material. After the first fire everything turns from a state of grey to pink, and a slight estrangement takes place because they now look different than what they did before. Glazes also look pink or white or grey before they are fired. I imagine now how the optics will look in their final state, and after making choices the second fire takes over. Total surrender is demanded by heat and flame. After the firing is completed, the cooling period leaves my mood fluctuating between doubt and hope. And, then only after removing the pieces from the kiln, can I say they belong to me.”

Traudi showed and sold her work through Art in Bloom Gallery beginning in 2015.  She is survived by brother, Walt Bayer and his wife Tina, nephew Jurgen Wilde and the family she chose and loved here in Wilmington.

Featured Artists

Fine Art on Sale Gift Cards Fine Art Under $125 Fine Art From $125-500 Bob Bryden – Mixed Media Debra Bucci – Painter Richard Bunting – Blown-Glass Artist Bradley Carter – Painter Judy Hintz Cox – Painter Karen Paden Crouch – Sculptor Elizabeth Darrow – Painter (ABSTRACT ART) Elizabeth Darrow – Painter (FIGURATIVE ART) Elizabeth Darrow – Painter (OTHER ART) Brian Evans – Ceramist Dianne Evans – Ceramist Susan Francy – Photographer and Scanography Wm. Fridrich – Photographer Mark Gansor – Painter Joanne Geisel – Landscape Painter Dorothy Gillespie (1920-2012) – Sculptor Jeri Greenberg – Pastel Artist Georgeann Haas – Mixed Media Painter Doug Haas – Wood Turner David Klinger – Photographer Brooks Koff – Glass Mosaic Artist Curtis Krueger – Photographer Joan McLoughlin – Painter David Norris – Illustrator David Norris – Painter Jessie Robertson – Painter and Sculptor Angela Rowe – Painter H.M. Saffer, II – Painter Satava Art Glass Tim Schwarz – Woodworker Gale Smith – Painter & Metal Artist Traudi Thornton (1940-2023) – POTTERY Traudi Thornton (1940-2023) – RAKU WARE Pam Toll – Painter and Mixed Media Gayle Tustin – Ceramist and Mixed Media Artist Kirah Van Sickle – Painter Roberto Vengoechea – Jewelry Designer Melissa Wilgis – Photographer Virginia Wright-Frierson – Painter Jameka Wrisbon Purdie – Jewelry Artisan Rebecca Yeomans – Fiber Artist


Guest Artists

Clarence Mayo – Guest Artist Meg McGrew – Guest Photographer Constance Pappalardo – Painter & Guest Artist Dick Roberts – Guest Painter (Joe) P Wiegmann – Guest Photographer