Danielle Callahan



A born (1963) & raised Minnesotan living in PA, Danielle Callahan appreciates adaptability.  She earned a BFA (Painting/Drawing) then stopped art-making for nearly a decade, working primarily in childcare & activist organizing.  Moved to create visually again, she explored glass sculpture and was introduced to wood fired ceramics thanks to a Jerome Foundation/St. John's Pottery Fellowship.  Her time with infants & toddlers continues to inform her willingness to try things without extensive "formal" knowledge.  Curator & longtime friend Allyson Evans observes, "Danielle's work with clay is rhythmic and simple, not fussy...(she) works with what happens, making purpose out of mishap in a beautiful way."    


Artist Statement:


Much of my work starts with play. 

Energy is primary to creating & raw clay suits my approach.  I cut, poke, drop, splay, twist, press & sometimes re-attach sliced off or fallen pieces.  Favorite sticks, rocks, bricks & my fingers prod a form;  experiences & observations emerge.  Layers are good, so I embrace wood firing, open to the range of rugged or subtle results. I deeply appreciate mixed media.  Dialogs that develop between different materials & people fascinate me.  Whether a toddler or adult, everyone has exposures to call on and reacts in their own way to various textures, patterns & colors.


Current bodies of work include chunky gestural sculptures & dynamic, contemplative bas relief wall panels. Occasionally, rough tableware is made, too. The process is quite different for each.  Wall panels are comprised of methodically handmade tiles-individually rolled, cut, then pressed into sidewalk cracks, tree bark or grass outside.  Sculptures rely on my willingness to allow a focused release & divulge a range of emotions. (Wonder, joy, confusion, frustration, despair...) On-going health struggles often infiltrate my work, as do concerns for the US & world. I feel lucky to have always had nature and imagination as a reservoir. 


I'm humbled my Partner views my art as imbued with "animus" (Latin)-a conveyance of my purpose, spirit, soul, breath.






BFA Studio Arts-Drawing/Painting.

University of Minnesota, Minneapolis, USA

Pioneer Fund Scholarship  for mixed media work.


Glass Artist Assistant to Joseph Becker & Peter Zelle, MN


Jerome Foundation & St. John's Pottery Emerging Artist Fellowship (2000), MN

Johanna Kiln Fifth wood firing with Richard Bresnahan, Collegeville, MN

"Body of Clay, Soul of Fire" Traveling Exhibition Featuring Art of

Richard Bresnahan, Apprentices & Emerging Artists.     

MN, WI, ND & SD.                                                          2001 -2003

*sculpture in book Body of Clay, Soul of Fire by Dr. Mathew Welch.




"The Clay Studio National"

Jury Team: Sana Musasama, Lauren Sandler & Kukuli Velarde.

The Clay Studio, Philadelphia, PA.                  July/August   2020


National "Contemporary Clay 2020 Biennial Juried Exhibition"

Juror Bill van Gilder.

The Art Center, Western Colorado Center for the Arts.       June 2020


"The Great Divide"         

Juror Bruce Dehnert.                                

Morean Center for Clay, St. Petersburg, FL.        Dec. 2019-Jan 2020


"Earth Devised: A National Exhibition of Ceramic Art"

Juror Richard "Rick" Nickel.

The d'Art Center, Norfolk, VA           2019


"Shapes of Influence" National Ceramic Biennial

Juror Simon Levin.

Springfield Art Association.  Springfield, IL                             2018


"Contemporary Clay 2018 National"   

Juror Doug Casebeer.

The Art Center, Western Colorado Center for the Arts.       2018                                               


"HWD" 12th Annual Regional Juried Exhibition

Juror Patrick Mauk.

Rosewood Arts Centre, Kettering, OH                                  2018


"8th Regional Juried Biennial Exhibition" 

Juror Ben Simons.

Corkran and Tubbs Galleries, Rehoboth Art League, DE     2018


"A Celebration of Art & Life"

Perelman Center for Advanced Medicine,

Philadelphia, PA                                                   2013, 2014, 2015


Moravian Pottery & Tileworks Tile Festival Artist, Doylestown, PA


"Philadelphia Photo Arts Center, Member Show"                2014


The Dreamer Lens cd cover art collaboration, Chester, PA


"My North Philly" Multi-year project with Philadelphia Mural Arts.

Tile Workshop Facilitator & Installer 

Kensington & Nicetown/Tioga neighborhoods, Philadelphia, PA


"Landscape Exhibition" Large scale temporary mixed media installation.

Schuylkill Gallery, Philadelphia, PA


Contemporary Glass Philadelphia (CGP) Grantee.    2002

"Hot Soup CGP Grant Recipient Exhibition"  Philadelphia, PA






"Labyrinth Sculpture" Up-cycled Chestnut beam inlaid w/tree bark textured tiles.

Peter Becker Community, Harleysville, PA


"Butterfly Tile Bench"  Concrete sculpture butterfly form embedded with handmade wood fired tiles.

St. John's Arboretum Prairie Restoration Project.  Collegeville, MN   


"Glass Rocks" Blown glass forms integrated into stone walls.

Inis Mor, Aran Islands, Ireland


Private commissions.


Labyrinth Beam in progress...Peter Becker Community in Harleysville, PA
Labyrinth Beam in progress...Peter Becker Community in Harleysville, PA

Blown glass form integrated into rock wall on Inis Mor, Aran Islands, Ireland.

Labyrinth Beam with tree bark textured ceramic tile, Harleysville, PA


Tent Rocks, Cochiti Pueblo...inspiration
Tent Rocks, Cochiti Pueblo...inspiration
Cochiti Pueblo, NM
Nice bark...Recloses, France
Rocks & trees, Fontainebleau, France
Fontainebleu France