Union Project Ceramics Co-op Artists

The Union Project Ceramics Cooperative seeks to assist emerging artists in growing and strengthening their creative process in a supportive, communal environment.

By being a gathering of artists who create together in a shared space, energize one another, and collaborate, the co-op seeks to contribute to Union Project’s greater mission to use our space to bring people together to connect, create, and celebrate.

Carina Kooiman


Carina Kooiman studied at Calvin College in Grand Rapids, MI where she graduated with a BA in Studio Art and French in 2009. She taught youth and adult ceramics programs in Grand Rapids before moving to Pittsburgh, PA where she is currently based. Carina works at the Children’s Museum of Pittsburgh managing the Art Studio, which includes working with community artists, developing arts programming, and directing the ceramic program. In addition to her home studio, Carina also teaches and works out of Union Project’s cooperative ceramic studio.

Talon Smith


Talon Smith was born and raised in Pittsburgh. Smith produces functional ceramic wares that are influenced by the changing landscape of Pittsburgh. She began studying ceramics at CCAC in 2008 and continued her education at Indiana University of Pennsylvania. Smith is currently a teaching artist at Manchester Craftsmen’s Guild, a member of the Union Project Ceramics Cooperative, participant in the Highland Park Pottery Tour, and was awarded the Emerging Artist Scholarship for the 2016 Three Rivers Arts Festival.

Elise Birnbaum

Robert Carl

Ben Dames

Alyssa Ruberto

Gloria Tsang

Mark Vander Heide