Focus: Functional Discussions
There are so many things to talk about when functional pottery is the topic, so we got several perspectives, from several makers, on several types of pots.


on the cover: Thermos set, 8 in. (20 cm) in height, stoneware, wheel thrown with a double wall, with glaze, fired to cone 9-10 in a noborigama wood kiln, by Kenyon Hansen, Red Lodge, Montana.
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Hot Coffee and Tea
by Kenyon Hansen

One way to keep the making of pots personal is to make them fill a personal need of your own. The making of a double-walled vessel to keep liquids warm, for instance, came from a potter’s winter walks to the studio.

Sets of Squares
by Suze Lindsay

Every type of ware has its own considerations when it comes to function and construction, but don’t overlook the power of surface design to reinforce the concerns of function.


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The Function of Storage
by Gay Smith

We all do a lot of thinking about how pots function in use, but what about when they are not in use? After all, how does a pot spend most of its time?

Studio Pet
by Allen Chen

Inspiration for functional forms can come from all sorts of places, both inside and outside the studio. Here’s a tale of what can happen when the outside comes into the studio—uninvited.

Considerations for Carving
by Emily Reason

Texture can be a wonderful thing, especially when created with tools of your own making, but it can get in the way of function unless you plan ahead and execute with attention to detail.

Cultural Mash-up
by Paul Linhares

A mortar and pestle are tools meant for mashing, but this potter makes use of it metaphorically as well, with surface design that combines the meeting of the two parts with the meeting of two cultures.


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MFA Factor: Cranbrook Academy of Art

One of the most respected graduate programs for ceramics is actually not as physically large as you may think. Size is good, effectiveness is better.

Arlene Shechet: Working on the Edge
by Liz Howe

A sculptor explores the vessel and various philosophical ideas through “the raw vitality of awkward originality and keen irony.”

Studio Visit: Elizabeth Robinson Wiley, Rangely, Colorado

After buying a a derelict building and all of the renovations it took to make it a working studio, then having two children, this small-town potter still finds time to actually make pots.


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