Gallery to hold final Jeffcoat Pottery firing sale, starts Sept 7

Sunset River Marketplace in Calabash, NC has announced a special sale of Jeffcoat Pottery pieces following the death of long time potter Joe Jeffcoat, gallery owner Ginny Lassiter has announced.

“Joe and his wife, Tonda, have been part of the Sunset River family almost from day one, “ Ginny says. “We’re heartbroken that Joe has passed. Everybody loved him. And their traditional wheel-thrown pottery with surface carving has been immensely popular here at the gallery.”

Joe Jeffcoat died on June 8 following complications from a fall and resulting surgery. At the time of his death Joe and Tonda were in the midst of readying for their 400thpottery firing, Tonda says, “As we completed our 398th, then 399thfirings, Joe kept saying, ‘We need to do something to celebrate 400.’ We were going to each make some special pottery – Joe, me, the kids. So when Joe passed away, we did create some family pieces in addition to the work for the gallery.  And every single piece in this firing – over 250 of them – is marked 400F.  All but the family pieces will be available at Sunset River Marketplace in Calabash.”

The Jeffcoats have combined their talents and love of clay in the creation of functional pottery since 1974. Tonda, an art educator and Joe, a retired banker, graduated from Atlantic Christian College and continued their study of pottery in the first ceramic class at Wilson Technical Institute in Wilson, NC. Additional study with Lanny Pelletier, Hiroshi Sueyoshi and Frank Byrd provided the critical fundamentals that allowed them to develop their own personal style. Joe often credited their association and friendship with Dan Finch at Finch Pottery in Bailey, NC, as playing a major role in their continued growth as potters.

After retiring in 2005, they moved to Little River, SC and opened Jeffcoat Pottery just outside of Calabash, NC. Often the pair would collaborate, with Joe throwing forms on the wheel and Tonda carving the surface of each.

Beginning Monday, Sept. 7, the collection of 400F-marked pottery will be on display and available for sale at Sunset River Marketplace. According to Ginny Lassiter, collectors are already visiting the gallery to purchase the Jeffcoats’ current inventory, and she expects work from the final firing to sell out quickly.

Sunset River Marketplace showcases work by approximately 150 North and South Carolina artists, and houses some 10,000 square feet of oils, acrylics, watercolors, pastels, mixed media, art glass, fabric art, pottery, sculpture, turned and carved wood and artisan-created jewelry.

Due to State mandates and Covid 19 restrictions, masks or face coverings are required. The gallery continues to host Coffee With the Authors, a series of presentations by local and regional authors. Social distancing is maintained. Sunset River Marketplace is located at 10283 Beach Drive SW, Calabash, NC 28467.  Hours are Monday – Saturday, 11 a.m. – 5 p.m. For more information, call 910.575.5999 or visit the website at Daily updates are available on the gallery’s Facebook and Instagram pages.

  • Betsy Ritchie

    Just want to thank y’all so much for the articles about my Uncle Joe and Aunt Tonda Jeffcoat and for the 400th firing event. Joe gave his all in anything he attempted.. It’s comforting during this time of grieving to find out that he was loved by so many more people than we knew. Thank you again and I will see y’all October 17th.

    1. Sunset River Marketplace

      Hi Bets,
      Thank you for your kind comment. We’re so sorry for your loss. Joe was special to all of us here at Sunset River Marketplace and look forward to seeing you during the event, which begins Sept. 7 (not sure what your reference to Oct. 17 means!).

  • Betsy Boggs Wells

    I am so saddened by his passing. I love his pottery. I looked on the site today because one of my mugs was broken and I wanted to replace it. And looking for a soap dish to match. So sad not to be able to add to this collection. A truly gifted potter of beautiful pottery.