Deborah Pittman


Deborah Pittman is Professor Emeritus of clarinet and studies in American Music at CSUS Sacramento, where she taught from 1991 to 2012. A native New Yorker, Ms. Pittman moved to Sacramento in 1981 to play second and bass clarinet with the Sacramento Symphony, a position she held from 1981-1990. After leaving the symphony, she began to explore other outlets for artistic expression.

“I devoted 45 years of my life to the clarinet. It was my first love and it has taken me to some wonderful places. I discovered the joy of playing with clay during the summer of 1994. Since that time, I have become addicted to the feel of wet spinning mud, to the smell of wet mud, to all the possibilities that wet mud holds. I will forever be a mud woman. Deborah Pittman

Deborah’s pots are Raku fired – a quick firing method that always yields a surprise.

Ceramic Processes

Raku is low-temperature firing process that utilizes glaze, fire and smoke to create marks on pottery, because the pots are low-fired, they are not watertight.

My raku pots are fired in a kiln that uses propane as fuel and are fired between 1100 and 1500 degrees. They are then pulled, glowing hot from the kiln, and placed in a metal trashcan with newspaper or pine needles. The heat from the kiln fired pottery causes the reduction materials to catch fire. The smoke is absorbed onto the surface of the pot. Aside from the Copper Mattes and some small bud bowls, none of my other pieces contain glaze- the variety of surfaces comes from a more Western approach to the Japanese Tradition.