Four years ago, Lina Alvarez, a Colombian artist and potter, visited a small pottery studio in Del Rey that was closing and selling their used equipment. She was there to buy a wheel to set up a home studio, but Lina fell in love with the space and wondered if it would be possible to buy the studio instead.
She made an offer and raised $12,000 through indiegogo to buy all of the equipment, re-design the space, and lease the storefront studio. Good Dirt LA opened on March of 2015.
The studio grew quickly. Within a year every class had a waiting list and the studio’s intro to pottery workshops were selling out 4 – 6 weeks in advance. As many students stayed with the studio for months, then years, becoming experienced potters in their own right and wanting more space and time in the studio, Lina and Debra Sarokin (one of the first students to join classes at Good Dirt LA and the studio’s first member) started to dream of a new studio, this one for experienced potters. The idea for Members Only LA (MoLA) was born out of a mutual love of pottery and the community of new and more experienced makers that was developing at Good Dirt LA.
After over a year of searching for the perfect location to house this creative space for experienced potters- where they would have all the equipment they would need, a soothing ambiance, and a chance to work alongside like-minded artists in a supportive atmosphere, Lina and Debra opened Members Only LA in January 2019 and now has 50 talented and diverse members. The studio has everything a potter needs in addition to being clean, bright, spacious, being open early and late, and allowing polite dogs to keep their owners company.
Lina on pottery as community:
“People in LA are now looking for new ways to create and connect. Our members
love to be part of the studio -to collaborate, share knowledge, unwind from a
work day together and often become close friends.”
Debra on discovering pottery:
“After a trip to Japan where I was mistakenly scheduled for a pottery class, I
came back to LA committed to continue pottery and found Good Dirt LA. It was
both a warm community and a relaxing creative outlet.”
For more information contact Lina or Debra at [email protected] or
visit www.membersonlyla.com for more info. We are taking new members!