The process of creating with clay is boundless. One can throw on the wheel, hand build, sculpt, add, subtract, stretch and push the medium into any kind of idea.
Sarah Wells Rolland and Catherine Jarosz have both been using all these techniques each in their own way.
Cat Jarosz makes work that, first and foremost celebrates function and fun. Her work is designed to perfection for its purpose but she doesn’t stop there. Cat takes the pot and designs it into a surprise and a conversation piece.
Her Deviled Egg Tray is designed with specific homes for each egg but the piece celebrates the eggs origins with playful chickens dancing around the rim. Her love of animals is evident in her joyful ‘weiner dog’ chip bowl, and the Candle Pagoda is an architectural delight, a home from which light emanates creating a sense of ceremony and atmosphere.
Her focus on every detail to each piece she makes is what makes Cat’s work masterful. When Cat has her hands on clay she transports to a place of solitude and purpose that brings forth work that has a story of its own to tell. Her hands conjure the story from within. Cat says “My work is primarily in the kitchen, but what a wonderful kitchen it is.” The Kitchen is the hub of any home and Cat’s pots share in the daily lives of their owners.
Sarah Wells Rolland uses these same techniques, but her approach to clay is almost the opposite. The majority of Sarah’s work begins on the wheel. This is her home, and the place she loves, and consequently she has developed an ability to accomplish a lot of her beginnings there. From her quiet place where creativity takes flight, Sarah works in rhythms that bring forth work that celebrate simplicity and form.
From that home base of the wheel she stretches and darts the clay to create movement and motion. The finished piece invites the eye to follow the path of this process, over planes, around curves, then resting. Although they imply function, Sarah has moved away from function being a primary focus of most of her work. In those pieces where the function is important, the lines, curves, and motion are ever present to give a fluid and eye-stopping sense of beauty while still fulfilling their functional purpose. The primary focus of Sarah’s work is to create inspiring environments. Her hope is that the visual experience of her work is one that continues through a lifetime to bring peace and harmony to a home or a workplace.
Sarah says, “I make the work knowing that it doesn’t belong to me, so I have a focus on what the piece will be giving to others. Beauty, inspiration, and peace are just some of the things I hope the work continues to bring forth. When a collector shares how the work continues to interest them and please them over the years, I know that I have succeeded. ”
Two different potters, two different approaches, two different outcomes but what these two women have in common is boundless too. They love their Creator, they love to create, they are at home in their studio, they seek excellence in their work and their personal lives, they love people, and they love to make beautiful pots.
Cat and Sarah have been friends for over 20 years, sharing in their creative process, helping each other problem solve, and sharing their lives. Their work is vastly different from each other’s, but if you look closely you will discover the influence they have had on each other throughout the years of a loving friendship. This love is translated to their pots, and in choosing their work, you develop your own relationship with each piece and in turn celebrate that friendship.