shankin pottery


CURRENT AND PAST APPRENTICES

 

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2015-PRESENT: AYLA MULLEN

A native of Washington State and a graduate of Marlboro College, I have been farmer, political theorist, aspiring writer, and bird research technician before coming to clay. This apprenticeship has been a wonderful adventure, leading me across the country to a new community, a new ecosystem, and an amazing opportunity to explore my relationship to pottery. These two yeas have involved thinking deeply about both the how and the why of my studio practice, and I couldn't ask for a more supportive and inspiring environment in which to do that. 

I see pots as vessels for storytelling; they can invoke thoughts, memories, and emotions which enliven a moment or an entire day. Clay is my canvas and my vocabulary. In the studio, I explore narrating the plants and landscapes around me as I perceive them, embodied in line and form and image. What stories do I tell with intention and exactness, and what comes through by accident? What is the formal vocabulary of emotion, and how can I convey the poetry of the natural world within the limits of a vessel?  My hope is that these stories, carved in clay, will expand and individualize, taking on a life of their own like the best folktales, through the accrued layers of meaning which use and touch bring to everything familiar.