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First Look: Heath Ceramic's New Mission Store + Opening Exhibit

Heath Ceramics just breathed new life into an old linen supply and laundry facility and added itself to the Mission's ever-growing roster of locally grown talent. The new retail space on 18th and Florida is so much more than a boutique, with an in-store chef's kitchen that will house local food items and serve as a gathering spot for events, a dedicated gallery that will host rotating shows throughout the year, a factory viewing court, and a Blue Bottle Coffee cafe (the latter two opening soon).

Peek through tall, glass-paneled walls beyond the shelves stacked with Heath's signature dinner- and tableware to get a view of the working factory space, part of the brand's efforts to make the crafting process transparent to customers.

Designers, architects, and the DIY-obsessed will be tickled by the tile inspiration wall (rotating boards in different colors and patterns) and tile bar where you'll have room to lay out sample creations. Come fall, you'll be able to see Heath's tile being made—their first factory outside the original Sausalito plant will begin production then.

Time your intro to the new Heath store to coincide with the opening of the gallery's first exhibit "Very New Work" by Japanese master potter Akio Nukaga (see images in gallery above). It's his first Bay Area show after sold-out exhibitions at the Heath store in LA in 2009 and 2011. You'll get to see the artist's forms that he's been working with for years, plus an exploration of new forms loosely inspired by his interest in Cubism. The opening reception takes place on Sat. 7/14 from 5–9 p.m., and Nukaga will host a very special throwing demo that's open to the public on Sun. 7/15 at 2 p.m.

"Very New Work" exhibit: Sat. 7/14–Wed. 9/5; Heath Ceramics, 2900 18th St., heathceramics.com