Pottery: living proof that you can indeed make something out of nothing. Thinking of picking up a new hobby this 2021? 22 Craft Studio (@22tutucraft) are out to set the record straight: pottery isn’t just about that iconic Ghost scene and getting your hands dirty with Patrick Swayze (although you will most definitely be getting your hands dirty!).
How did 22 Craft Studio come about?
22 Craft Studio was started two years ago, we’re really lucky to have this opportunity to share our love of clay and the process of making it with the others. It was founded through help from family and friends so we really appreciated it.
What is the charm of pottery that your studio has stuck with until now?
The charm of pottery is definitely the satisfaction of creating. The idea of turning a lump of clay to something functional or a 3D form of idea through sculpting it, the process fills one’s heart up. As we know pottery making is time consuming, but we feel the agony of waiting actually doubles up the happiness when an artwork is finally formed after they’re fired. Not to mention, the self-absorbed moment when you’re throwing the clay can be very cathartic!
We love your diverse range of ceramics — how do you find inspiration to create them?
We started 22 Craft Studio as a place to share and educate, so we’re hoping to try out more styles and techniques so our students wouldn’t be restricted to certain paths. We hope that we can encourage more people to try to create art in a 3D form through pottery making. Inspiration can actually be found from everything around us, like creating the texture by from a tree bark, capturing the leaf vein into dinnerware, mimicking raindrops to a form vase shape, the list goes on!
The most surprising ceramic product that came out differently to what you imagined?
Ceramic artwork is pretty fragile at their bone dry stage before they’re bisque fired, so for plate rim or thin edges, it’s usually handled with care or avoid putting pressure on that certain part. So students who come to the workshop are usually curious about different artworks and there was this dipping plate/ dumpling plate I made that was left drying on the shelf and was being taken up to be admired when she ended up breaking the rim! I kind of transformed and carved the plate rim to a flower shape and drew on it so it is now left at Linchang’s Museum in China as an exhibit item when I went to join their wood firing event over there.
How would you describe the style of pottery at 22 Craft Studio?
For now we wouldn’t really say that 22 Craft Studio had a very definite style yet but we’re definitely embracing artwork with more texture that could enhance the characteristic of the clay material. We’re more on the experimental part where we like to explore on different clay, shape and glaze to see what interesting things could be formed with it.
Which would be more satisfying and why: remaking an ancient vase or sculpting your own?
Personally remaking an ancient vase is more satisfying as it is like going through the history path to understand why the maker does or makes it in that way. It’s like reading someone's story by remaking their stuff and understanding the environment they are in. Sculpting something new is equally fun but if a choice needs to be made, remaking it is.
As a potter and ceramic artist, where does 22 Craft Studio see themselves on the form vs function spectrum?
22 Craft Studio would like to try out more forms to challenge ourselves in recreating shapes and patterns we see in our usual life.
We’re more on the experimental part where we like to explore on different clay, shape and glaze to see what interesting things could be formed with it.
Everyone knows how hard clay is to work with! Any hilarious stories that happened in your studio that you could share with us?
Playing with clay often has a lot of fun accidents happen but it’s not something hilarious that would be worth mentioning , but we find it very fulfilling to see people enjoying it and spending their time to learn something new over here.
What does 22 Craft Studio hope to achieve with their brand?
We hope that we can inspire more people to experience the pottery making process and create their art with clay. By encouraging the understanding of the pottery making process, we hope people would appreciate and cherish it more.