Projects designed to be used with or inspired by food and dining
Chowder Bowls (2013)
There's no question that the vessel food is served in contributes to the experience of dining. For this series, I decided to bring the environment of the ocean to the table to inform the seafood the bowls would hold. As you eat from these bowls you can cup the seaforms in your hand and feel the texture of the barnacles on the outside. These are decorated with glass murrini, which is when molten glass is pulled out into a rod (much like you would pull taffy), then allowed to cool and sliced into hollow rounds. The rounds are attached to the glass base in a kiln heated to a specific temperature. The spoons that accompany the bowls are porcelain and based on the very first spoons: shells.
Using basic white glass, I designed a set of six plates meant to be a starting point for plating design. The plates are encrusted with hollow murrini fused on to make small cylindrical forms that can hold a variety of garnishes, from sauces to herbs to fruits, to elevate the art of plating food one step further.
This is one of the first varieties I bought from Seed Savers years ago, and it’s become a favorite in my garden every year. The compact little bushes look fantastic in borders or planted in pots, and the flavor is terrific. While I was staying here I made basil-infused chocolate truffles, and the ones made with globe basil were hands-down the best.
During the summer of 2012, I spent 3 weeks living at Heritage farm (Headquarters of Seed Savers Exchange) as a Visitng Artist. One of my favorite parts of my time there were my morning walks and weeding sessions; the way the dewdrops sparkled on all the plants completely mesmerized me. Growing up in cold and dry Idaho, I wasn’t used to the glimmering lushness there! I found my time admiring the plants at Heritage Farm to be grounding and relaxing, and it allowed me to form connections to the plants and the people I worked with. This series of glass bowls is an exploration of the dewdrop theme, with inspiration for each bowl taken from particular heirloom plants that stood out to me.
Rock Wall Vessels (2015)
Sometimes it's important to zoom in and celebrate the tiny details: the variegated shades of green moss underfoot and their tiny little starburst patterns, the subtle color shifts and delicate patterns found in lichen, the unending shades of green surrounding a drainage. These were inspired by an early spring hike up a river canyon near Riggins, Idaho. Everything appeared brown and dead but upon closer inspection even the rocks were bursting with life! I breathed the energy of the earth into my lungs on that hike, and with it plenty of inspiration.
Forest Essence (2015)
These were created as a commisson for a private party with a "Northwestern Forest" theme. I made five Idaho-inspired infusions and paired each with a wild animal to feature on the bottle. Pine Nut Whiskey was packaged in a bear bottle, Conifer Tip Gin in a raccoon bottle, Elderflower Lemon Vodka in a deer bottle, Wild Violet Syrup in a fox bottle, and Wild Rose Huckleberry Vodka in an elk bottle. I drew a resist of my patten on each bottle and then sandblasted it to add texture. Each bottle is topped with a raku-fired ceramic topper. Taste the forest, love the forest.
Mouth Plates (2014)
While working on my drawing portfolio I got bored of drawing on paper and turned my attention to bisque-fired ceramics. It was a fun challenge to draw realistic mouths on a rougher surface using underglaze pencils. I challenged myself to explore themes of seduction and disgust on a utilitarian object meant for frequent use.
We have stands for our cakes and cloches for our pies and flags for our cupcakes, but do we ever allow our humble produce such a lavish embellishment? No, my friends, we do not. But all that has changed! I have made a series of work from recycled glass that is meant to be the accessory your apples have always dreamed of. Named "Petrichor" in honor of the smell as the first raindrops hit the earth, these glass pieces show the elegant beauty of nature's own sparkling gems: dewdrops. Simple and clean, these elevate your fruit bowl to a whole other level. How do you like them apples?
Fern Dreams (2015)
Ferns have a strange two-stage reproductive system: the spores from the ferns fall and germinate into a separate plant that looks nothing like a fern. Then that plant matures and produces spores, which then germinate and grow into a fern plant again. We often think of the conscious mind and the unconscious mind as being two pretty separate things but I think that the divide between the two is less black line and more expansive gray space, perhaps a space bigger then either state alone. In some ways, the mind is like these ancient and primordeal fern plants: two distinct states that blend together and dance back and forth endlessly.
blown glass, sandblast ferns (made from hand-drawn fern sketches with Rayzist photo-emulsion film), coldworked lenses, silver enamel.
Barnacle Sake Cups (2016)
Many people see barnacles as a nuisance, something to be scrubbed off boat hulls and cleaned off buoys. But I see barnacles as a story, saying: "this shell has been places. It has been home to many." These amazing little creatures live in the intertidal zone; a mysterious realm between ocean and land. They thrive in the pounding waves and the changing tides. Their shells are durable but their bodies are delicate and feathery. They are masters of adaptation, making their homes on just about everything. Don't you agree that a bottle washed up on the beach has more intrigue when it is coated in barnacles, signifying that it has been on a journey? These handmade porcelain cups are my homage to the Ocean and her secrets.
Sea Urchin Vessels (2016):
Whenever I go tidepooling, I want to interact with the Intertidal Zone with all of my senses. There are so many fascinating things to touch hidden amongst the barnacles and anemones. These textural forms are sculpted entirely by hand out of porcelain, then glazed and fired at high temperatures to make them solid and completely food-safe. They are meant to be used as precious serving vessels holding little bites of sea-inspired treats: a delight for the stomach and also for the hands.
Ember Tea Cups (2016):
Created for the interactive event Ember, these functional teacups were inspired by the beauty of glowing embers and burned logs. They are hand-sculpted out of high-fire stoneware and then glazed with a shimmery orange glaze and decorated with real gold luster dots. The clay itself is very high in iron, making it appear blackish gray and slightly metallic after firing - the perfect representation of the beauty leftover after fire takes its course.
Nacre Series (2016)
Created for the Interactive event "Shipwreck," these sea-inspired forms are hand-sculpted out of porcelain and finished with mother of pearl luster details. I wanted to create a body of work that blurred the lines between man-made and sea-embellished. These can be purchased on the website of The Wondersmith.