The Peace of Art in Auburn is so much more than a "paint your own pottery" studio. It's a place where anyone is welcome to drop in, make art with her hands, get dirty, lose himself in the meditation of creation and build community.
Brent Hood, who opened the studio with his partner Eva Isenberg six months ago, has been finding solace behind the potter's wheel since elementary school.
"There's such joy and peace in it," Hood said. "You have to be centered and almost meditative. I wanted to be able to teach that, to pass it on."
Hood considered opening his studio in Roseville, but the Auburn resident wanted to be near home and to connect with the thriving art scene in the foothills.
"Auburn is a center of culture and art ... (but) it doesn't have anything like this," he said, gesturing to the large room filled with several work tables surrounded by shelves of artwork in various stages of creation.
Hood had the idea for a drop-in art space as a college student in Oregon, and after a nearly 20-year teaching career, he wanted to make a space where families might hang out together and where children are welcome after school and in the summer.
"There's so much kids can do with a slab of clay," Hood said. "They can use cookie cutters to make wind chimes, mobiles or ornaments."
Kids aren't the only ones taking advantage of the space, though. Several groups of retirees have also realized that The Peace of Art is a great place to have fun and socialize at the same time.
In addition to drop-in art, Hood and Isenberg offer monthly memberships, private and group workshops and art parties, regularly adding new media options such as paper-crafting, raku and sewing. They're also open to suggestions.
Hood says his talent is with the potter's wheel while Isenberg is better at "building" art. With their combined talents, they're offering something really unique to Auburnites: A place to get lost in creativity.
"It's a great way to lose track of time," Hood said.
The Peace of Art is located at 1472 Grass Valley Hwy.
For more information, call 530-537-2007 or visit ThePeaceofArt.com.