Walter Reiss

reiss_over cell phone
Walter Reiss

“Clay is the only material that can be distorted and manipulated in so many ways. I prefer that my pieces reflect these qualities rather than painting designs and pictures on pots. The textures of deformation gives the pieces vitality‚ĶI prefer the spontaneous character of clay to depict in a rough, yet powerful way, my whimsical or satirical expressions of objects, events or conditions that affect me emotionally or intellectually.” ~ Walter Reiss

While form is a key aspect of Reiss’ artwork, he specializes in crystalline glazes that are produced by firing a piece sometimes four or five times to bring together, in balance, the qualities of various glaze techniques including luster and raku.

Walter Reiss is an internationally acclaimed ceramicist and 32-year Laguna Festival of Arts exhibitor. Reiss’ unique ability to stretch and distort the clay he works with results in fantastically manipulated objects and forms.

Southern California native Walter Reiss’ credentials include earning his bachelor’s degree in science from Whittier College, followed by a Masters degree in mineralogy from Caltech, and later becoming Professor of Geology at Fullerton College, a position he maintained for thirty-eight years. It was through his study of these subjects that Reiss first became interested in working with clay and experimenting with a range of firing and glazing techniques. Encouraged by a ceramics instructor to experiment with crystal glazes on porcelain, Reiss has turned his passion for geology into an artistic career.

Reach Walter at his Laguna, California studio at 949-494-6641 or email:

1 thought on “Walter Reiss”

Comments are closed.