Chuck Koucky, an award winning studio potter, began making pottery in 1971 under the instruction of Dick Leach at Albion College, Michigan. He obtained his BA in fine art (Pottery and Printmaking) and decided to pursue his pottery as a career. In 1976 he purchased a farm in northern Michigan and built his first studio where he and his wife Nancy lived and worked. Chuck took a break from production pottery from 1986-2001 when they opened their Art Galleries, Koucky Gallery, in Michigan and Florida. During this time however, Chuck taught workshops in raku, stoneware, and kiln building. He was “Artist in Residence” at Collier County’s Gulfcoast High School (Florida) and has been a guest speaker at other schools in the area. Early in 2001 Chuck and his wife Nancy began thinking about once again getting back to their own creations. At the encouragement of friends who live in Matlacha and Bokeelia, Florida, Chuck and Nancy began to explore the possibilities of attaining this goal on Pine Island. When they found “Old McGowan’s Farm”, a charming plant nursery, they knew it was the right place to re-build Chuck’s pottery studio. They have successfully combined their home and pottery studio in the midst of a tropical paradise creating a unique and creative atmosphere in which to live and work.
Nancy, received her BA in Art History from the College of Wooster in Ohio. After marrying Chuck in 1978, she began her career in art as a weaver, but changed to jewelry-making in 2000. After Hurricane Charley she began her new career and passion in Graphic Arts in 2004. She has turned this love of graphics into yet another Koucky business – NRK Designs. She specializes in graphics for small businesses: ads, posters, product branding, brochures and more. Annually she publishes the Guide to the Arts on Pine Island. Additionally, she is the Design Director for Good Old Boat Magazine and the Pine Island Real Estate Guide. She still enjoys making jewelry in her free time as she loves the colors and textures of the beads and metals with which she creates her jewelry. It is a welcome departure from your work at the computer.
When Chuck is not making or teaching pottery, his love is sailing. He is a licensed captain and a certified American Sailing Association Instructor. Early in 2004 he opened Pine Island Sailing School, however it never got a good start as Hurricane Charley nearly destroyed “Snee” the C & C Mega 30 which was his teaching vessel. Early fall of 2010, Chuck and Nancy acquired “Alondra”. She is a 47 foot wooden sailing vessel designed by L. Francis Herreshoff. Half day, full day, and custom charters are all available. Late in 2011 they acquire “Cornelia” another wonderful teaching vessel, a 19ft West Wight Potter. She is also a perfect little vessel for small cruises for two. Please visit www.pineislandsailing.com to learn more about our sailing offerings.