You know summer’s here when Pewabic Pottery throws up a tent for its annual House & Garden Show, which kicks off Thursday evening with a ticketed Party Preview Fundraiser to benefit the nonprofit and its educational programs.
The ceramic showcase fun runs through Sunday, with free guided tours, artist demonstrations, outdoor biergarten, live music and a shout-out to Detroit’s iconic Guardian Building.
If you detect extra bounce in this year’s festivities, it might be because this is the 150th birthday of founder and pottery legend Mary Chase Perry Stratton.
“We’re celebrating Stratton’s birthday all year,” said Pewabic Executive Director Steve McBride, noting that her work enriches landmarks all across Detroit.
Indeed, this year Pewabic’s “Postcard from Detroit” tile stars the Guardian Building, architect Wirt Rowland’s orange, over-the-top Art Deco skyscraper, whose half-dome entrances were designed by Stratton.
The 5-inch-by-7-inch glazed tile, available now, costs $95.
“We love to celebrate Detroit,” McBride said, noting that the “Postcard” series — a new tile is issued every year — debuted a couple years ago with the Belle Isle’s MacArthur Bridge, followed by the historic shed at Eastern Market.
In a nod to Detroit’s celebrated Scarab Club, Pewabic also is premiering a new scarab paperweight and tile. Four inches by 3 inches, the oval tile comes in a range of glazes, including iridescent, and sells for $32.
Also getting launched at the House & Garden Show will be the new Pewabic Street Team, a “mobile museum and clay experience” with two Raku kilns that will begin touring Metro Detroit this summer.
“We’re taking Pewabic on the road,” McBride said, “converting an extended high-roof van into a traveling exhibition. With the portable kilns, we can do pop-up clay parties and give people a chance to get involved.”
Finally, if all this arty excitement overwhelms, head for the outdoor tent, grab a seat and catch your breath.
“You can sit outside in our biergarten,” McBride said, “get a craft beer and just enjoy the vibe.”
Pewabic House & Garden Show weekend
Preview Party Fundraiser
6-9:30 p.m. Thursday
Tickets: $110-$250 per person ($55-members under 35)