Use the links below to learn more about Hinckley Pottery's instructors.

Jill Hinckley


Ann Riley


Karen Bearman


Mike Pappas


Sabri Ben-Achour


Sam Gordon



Jill Hinckley

Jill is the founder of Hinckley Pottery and its chief instructor, with nearly 40 years of experience. She began her artistic career as owner of master drawing and contemporary art galleries in Greenwich Village and on Madison Avenue in New York City.

In the late 1960s, Jill relocated to Washington DC and established a new gallery in Georgetown. She wanted to focus on local artists and discovered that DC offered a talented community of potters. When one of them found himself without a studio, she let him use her basement in exchange for lessons.

From that beginning, two things have been constants — Jill's love of clay and her love of teaching others about pottery. She has devised her own easy steps for explaining pottery-making fundamentals. These instructions invariably are accompanied by a colorful collection of 'Jillisms.'

Out of the studio, Jill is an avid gardener and gourmet cook. She loves dogs and cats, is an ardent fan of the Redskins, Wizards and Nationals, and occasionally indulges her compulsion for matchmaking, despite her lack of success.

Her Words

"Form was my first love in pottery and beautifully thrown forms like the classical pottery of Japan, China and Korea always inspire me. Over the years, my interest has extended to the surface of the pot. After studying sumi-e, I began to work on transferring brush stroke techniques from paper to clay, drawing on my pots with wax resist or white slip or oxides.

"The discipline of constant practice is what I preach to my students as well as myself. Overall, I strive for a simple elegant line, nothing tricky, just simple and strong. And, of course, I want my pots to be used and enjoyed."