About Molly Sanyour

molly sanyour in her pottery studio holding up work she made
Putting a contemporary twist on the ancient craft of creating with clay and the constant exploration of styles and technique, in which one can create, are just part of what excites Molly most about clay.

She studied as a ceramics major at James Madison University in Harrisonburg, Virginia and graduated with a Bachelor of Fine Arts in ceramics and a K-12 art teaching license in 2005.

In 2006 she landed her first teaching job as a Title 1 elementary school art teacher where she taught for eight years. During those years she continued to take ceramics classes through local art centers and universities, learning from as many potters as she could, including: Kelly Kerr, David Camden, Jane Hendley and Pamela Reynolds. Her passion for clay even led her to apply for a grant in which she was awarded funding to purchase a new kiln and classroom set of all supplies and tools needed to start a ceramics program at the elementary school.

In 2014, Molly landed her dream job: teaching purely ceramics to both beginners and advanced levels at her former high school in Richmond, Virginia. There, she is one of two ceramics teachers teaching at the International Baccalaureate School. 

Through teaching others, Molly honed her skills and pushed her own art forward by establishing Molly Sanyour Ceramics LLC at the end of 2015.

2016 was a year of learning the business side of art.  While making and selling at various local venues she also established a website and started shipping orders.

In 2017, Molly built her own studio, and spent the summer traveling to attend workshops from potters who inspired her: 
Theodoros Galigalidis (@Galigalidis_art) and Marilena Michopoulou (@michopouloumarilena) in Athens, Greece and Eric Landon (@tortus) in Copenhagen, Denmark. In the fall, she also expanded her techniques by taking a portrait sculpture workshop with Charlie Mostow.  Upon her return, she continued to expand by offering private classes and starting "Throwing with Molly", a Live Instagram show airing Monday nights at 8pmEST via @mollysanyourceramics where she fields questions and shares her techniques. Episodes can now be found on her YouTube channel.

In 2018, Molly participated in the Trinity Episcopal School Faculty art show, had a solo show at Quirk Gallery in Richmond, Virginia, participated in the juried event: Arts in the Park and was asked to sell her work in Bridget Beari Home Store.  She was featured in Ceramics Monthly, Pottery Making Illustrated and B Side Collective magazines. In the summer of 2018, Molly offered her first workshops in Richmond, Virginia that attracted international participants. She also traveled to Snowmass, Colorado to attend two welding workshops at the Anderson Ranch Arts Center, one week with David Kimball Anderson and the second week with Alicia Eggert.  Molly wrapped up the year attending an invitational workshop at Clay by the Bay, in San Francisco called "The Business of Clay: For Women" where she connected and inspired by other potters from all over the world. In 2019, Molly began the year with her first invitational workshop at Mud Mama's studio in Hickory, North Carolina where she taught various techniques to the studio members.  For the third time, participated in the juried show: Arts in the Park, in Richmond, Virginia.  During the summer, she traveled to Arrowmont where she took a week long class with Andréa Keys Connell called, "Building Big with a Small Kiln".  This workshop inspired a new sculptural body of work for Molly with the creation of her "Big Belly" planter and mugs.  Towards the end of the summer, Molly was invited out to Los Angeles to teach various workshops at Members Only LA and Good Dirt Pottery studios.  Upon her return home, she had her first international guest, Léan vd Merwe, of @argilebylean, from Cape Town, South Africa, on episode 55 of her show, "Throwing with Molly".  Another huge excitement came for Molly in the fall, when she was asked to make "butt mugs" for super star, Lizzo!
One year later, in 2020, Lizzo would been seen in Vogue interviews, Dove campaigns and TikToks featuring Molly's now copyrighted Butt Mug.  This popularity led to a successful Kickstarter which allowed for the Butt Mugs to now be mass produced and in retail shops as well as on Amazon!
Molly finished out 9 years as a full time high school ceramics teacher, in her hometown of Richmond, Virginia, creating her own work, and growing her business before taking the leap and moving to Atlanta, Georgia where she will pursue her next big dream of opening her first community pottery studio, offering classes, events, workshops, memberships and more!
molly Sanyour working in her studio, standing up stacking one piece of wheel thrown pottery on top of another.