Diana Pancioli - Still Life

Humans have been making pots for over 20,000 years. I am curious about the connections between the kinds of pots that people in history made and the everyday lives they led. I am awed by the beauty and variety of the objects that comprise the long ceramic continuum.

I have been working with clay for fifty years. Early in my career I built two gas kilns and made utilitarian ware. I enjoyed making cups and plates, teapots and vases. Although utilitarian forms are easily named—their variations are limitless. Creating within the boundaries of these formal themes is the endless delight of making pots.

Occasionally I made wall sculptures, glazed in black, that were inspired by my earlier experience with charcoal drawing. Later, when I worked at Pewabic pottery, I learned to design and create large tile wall murals for train stations and hospitals.

Making and firing clay objects, whatever their size and purpose, requires various kinds of knowledge: of materials and processes, of clay and glazes, of kilns and firing, as well as the hard won skill of creating clay forms. I love the multiplicity of skills necessary to the craft—the technical, physical, intellectual, and aesthetic challenges.

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