SPG / Art By Fire

About Us

SPG / Art by Fire is comprised of clay, glass, and metal artists in and around the Sacramento and Northern California area. Our award-winning artists produce original functional and nonfunctional artworks which are sold in stores, galleries, art shows, and on the Internet.

SPG / Art by Fire meets the second Wednesday of every even-numbered month typically at the Shepard Garden and Art Center, 3330 McKinley Boulevard, Sacramento, or in the home/studio of a member artist. A variety of subjects within the spectrum of art by fire are discussed at these informative meetings. Anyone with an interest in the organization is welcome to come to any meeting. Go to the Calendar for meeting dates, times, and locations.

The history of the original Sacramento Potters Group (SPG), the area’s oldest alliance of three-dimensional artists, started from the outgrowth of a conversation held between two potters during a very slow art show in the mid-1970s. The two, having enjoyed the pottery “shop talk,” decided it would be valuable to have group meetings where potters could share ideas, successes (or lack thereof), and show news. With the assistance of a local high school pottery teacher, a schedule was developed and SPG was born.

Initially the group gathered monthly, with meetings mostly structured around films, slides, or “how-to” presentations by local clay artists. Other meetings were of a purely social nature. In the early years the group sponsored a number of small ceramic art shows, held at banks or other commercial venues, but as time went by, the group became increasingly focused on the business of pottery, shows and sales, rather than art shows. In 2011, the name was changes to NOCA Art by Fire to encompass and include glass and metal artists.

Currently the group meets six times a year with the focus being on “show and tell” by various members who show slides of their work, facilitate discussions regarding techniques and technical information relating to clay, glass, or metal. From time to time, group activities, such as pit firing opportunities or field trips, have been scheduled, and on occasion, demonstrations by notable artists from the Bay area have been arranged. In addition to regular meetings, the NOCA Art by Fire produces the newsletter "Seconds," and hosts a Web site featuring works of its member artists.

Annually, between 1977 and 1997, the SPG sponsored show was held on Father’s Day weekend. The purpose of the show was to provide Sacramento area potters with a venue that would offer a good sales opportunity, and increase public knowledge of and appreciation for handmade pottery. After a ten-year hiatus, NOCA Art by Fire has brought the show back. It includes functional and nonfunctional clay, glass, and metal art, and is being held on an annual basis on the Saturday before Father’s Day at the Shepard Garden and Art Center.

The NOCA Art by Fire’s other long established and well-known show is its “Seconds Sale.” Member artists brush the dust from their artistic mishaps, less than perfect pieces, and pieces they are tired of dragging off to shows, and make them available at amazingly reduced prices This popular show, that began in 1987 and annually held on the second Saturday in January, finds devoted “Seconds” patrons lining up hours before the doors open regardless of the weather.