Colorado artist molds life from love of ceramics

There are some moments in our lives when we make a decision that, unbeknownst to us, will go on to shape the rest of our lives. For Jonathan Kaplan, a Colorado artist, that decision was choosing to take a ceramics class in high school. “I needed some extra credits in high school, so I took a ceramics class, and I knew immediately,” Kaplan recalled about how he first learned about ceramics. That class shaped the rest of his life.

45 years of success

Some 45 years later, Kaplan is still going strong in the industry and owns his own gallery, The Plith Gallery in Denver, Colo. Kaplan’s work has also been featured in exhibitions across the country. His latest exhibition was “Modern Moche,” a modern take on old Peruvian ceramics. Kaplan has also published articles about working with different types of ceramic work.

“In cultures there are makers and not makers. Working in ceramics, you get to be a maker and enhance the life of others with beautiful things,” Kaplan said. The Esther and John Clay Fine Arts Gallery, situated in the Fine Arts Building, will host a special “Ceramic Forms” exhibition featuring the work of Kaplan.

Ceramic forum at LCCC

The show will feature new work by the artist; the exhibit will show a wide array of different types of ceramics work, not the traditional mugs or bowls, but more sculptural work. Kaplan encouraged attendees to come with an open mind, and he said he hoped the work would engage viewers and inspire them to ask questions. It also just might spark a new passion it once did for Kaplan.

The exhibit opens Tuesday, Oct. 30, with a reception at noon. The gallery will continue to feature and display the artwork through Nov. 27. Admission is free. The gallery is open to the public Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Kaplan was brought to LCCC by the Cultural Committee. For more information on the show, contact the LCCC Foundation or visit Kaplan’s gallery website,

Plinth Gallery, artists page

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