Marilee Schumann

Chestertown, MD

My pottery is primarily functional. I try to be aware of the convenience and comfort of the user, so my pots may become favorite tools in the kitchen or on the table. And I want to make beautiful pots that enhance the beauty of the house, with simplicity and elegance. And finally, I am interested in the role pottery plays in the history of human culture, its place in domestic life, in ritual, and in artistic expression. I believe that our lives are improved by using handmade, locally made, individually made objects. My current work is white stoneware clay with black underglaze decoration, fired to cone 6 in an electric kiln.
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Paula Shalan

WEST STOCKBRIDGE, MA

My work is hand built from white earthenware using coil, pinch, and slab construction. A fine clay slip-terra sigillata is applied, the work is polished, and then smoke fired. I am drawn to the naked or simply clad clay pot. Just as a woman’s silk slip emphasizes every curve and crevice of her body, terra sigillata shows off the nuances of the clay surface and highlights its form. Its reflective satin sheen contrasts with the light absorbing, matte surface of the bare clay.
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Michael Schwegmann

CHAMPAIGN, IL

I hand form all these pieces out of porcelain clay. I use wheel-thrown, extruded, and hand-modeled parts without casting molds. I create ceramic representations of common objects through attentive, selected details and surfaces. Most works reference objects relating to labor and hands-on activities. Instead of trompe l’oeil sculptures, these look like memories of objects or icons. I alter and combine these icons to engage intellect and emotion in unexpected ways.
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Elizabeth Pechacek

Bloomington, IN

I am fascinated by the burst of energy that finds a new form and the calm obsession required to winnow that shape into the most ideal proportions. The color and line are applied to the surface in a playful re- examination of the original idea. This process of invention, perfection and appraisal is the strategy that I use to charge a cup, bowl or sculpture with a vibration which can create a positive disruption in patterns of living. If I can make something unexpected through my explorations, then I feel that my things can be of use. The implied interaction of pottery that is so deeply ingrained in our culture makes it a perfect vehicle for this purpose and the variety of forms and functions makes this genre an infinite source of inspiration.
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Jennifer McCurdy

VINEYARD HAVEN, MA

I use a translucent porcelain body because it has a beautiful surface, and it can convey the qualities of light and shadow that I wish to express. After I throw my vessel on the potter’s wheel, I alter the form to set up a movement of soft shadow. When the porcelain is leather hard, I carve patterns to add energy and counterpoint. I burnish the surface and then I fire my work to cone 10, where the porcelain becomes non-porous and translucent, and one of the hardest surfaces known to man. Some of the finished pieces hold elusive glimpses of the balance between the convex and the concave, and light absorbed and reflected. In further exploration, I marry the fine porcelain with the ancient art of gilding. The 23 carat gold leaf illumines the interior of the vessel, to reveal new curves and patterns.
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Jennifer Martin

Wayne, PA

My ceramic work celebrates tradition while not being inhibited by its vast history. I strive to reveal the sensual nature of clay as reflected by the touch of my hand. Using similar tools and processes to that of a traditional potter, I look not towards the ideal symmetrical vessel but instead towards asymmetry. My work often acts as a metaphor for the physical body, and I consider function secondary to fluidity and gesture in the form. While the marks on the surface of the pots record the history of my hand in its creation, these same marks represent an individual’s experience. Like the rings seen in the cross-section of a tree, these marks provide a history of growth. In a similar manner I use the repetitive lines and patterns in my work to create a vocabulary able to describe gender, a specific situation, a human journey or simply one’s personality make-up. I hope to elevate the ceramic vessel from simply a utilitarian object by creating different scenarios in which to view it.
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Thomas Marrinson

Hinesburg, VT

My decorative vessels are studies in simplicity and grace of form, the juxtaposition of textures and colors which enliven each other and the luminosity of soft, non-reflective surfaces. I use low fire white earthenware that is slab and wheel formed and the colors are commercial underglaze colors.
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Cliff Lee

STEVENS, PA

I work on a potter’s wheel with translucent porcelain. I then carve, apply, alter or sculpt the porcelain to obtain the desired form. I use a gas kiln to high fire monochrome reduction glazes.
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Lynda Ladwig

LAFAYETTE, CO

I hand build from slabs of porcelain clay. I create series of functional pieces: trays, ewers and vessels. The majority of these pieces are comprised of two slabs of clay joined at the edges leaving a pocket of volume inside. I visualize the shapes in terms of elevations and edges. The pocket of volume contrasts with the sharp edges of the profile. Most all of these pieces employ the use of slip (liquid clay) in in either black or white.
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Lori Katz

Springfield, VA

I am intrigued by contrast, the play of dark against light, the pull of empty space against the inclination to fill it up, the placement of line and shape and the use of subtle texture. My current work is stoneware with inlays and additions of black and white stoneware. Additions to the raw surface can include slips, underglaze and high-temperature wire. Post firing additions can include acrylic paint, oil paint, cold wax and metal leaf.
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