Pottery with a Quist: A Story of Unexpected Love and Passion

Life is full of daily routine that we rely on to feel safe and secure. It’s also filled with unexpected opportunities that we need them in order to grow and to feed our passions! These opportunities can come to us through intentionality, life’s crossroads, or circumstances that can be filled with joy or sorrow. I have come to believe that whatever awaits us in our future, we are being prepared for in the now.

For potters Teresa and Larry Hultquist, all of their life experiences were preparing them for their eventual partnership of love and purpose. Theirs is a friendship and romance that is blended into their beautiful creation, Quist Pottery, or as they joyfully say, “Pottery with a Quist!” Larry and Teresa had many years and very full lives before they ever met. In the early stages of their acquaintance, neither had any idea they would one day be partners in all things.

Meeting each other in what I call the “third season of life”, Larry was married and working with the Park Service where Teresa was an administrator. Teresa, unmarried for over 25 years since her first marriage, had immersed her life in friendships, career, and art. She was analytical and linear by day, but by night and on the weekends, she was an artist who created and sold jewelry on the side, as well as working other mediums. Unleashing that creative part of herself in study, skill, detail, and passion was as much a part of her as her career, and she balanced the two for decades, and prospered in both.

Larry spent his career as an architectural landscaper, sculpting creative, lush and beautiful environments by day, but like Teresa, he was an artist by night and on weekends as he prolifically painting with watercolors. Larry was married for the first time at 44 years of age to his beloved wife, Molly. Unexpectedly, after 15 years of marriage, Molly passed away. Teresa knew Larry and Molly. She was aware of his deep grief. Larry took his time to adjust to life without his wife. Neither Larry nor Teresa knew that in the years to follow they were heading toward a beautiful union, a marriage full of grace where yielding to one another came naturally. They share a passion for each other and a passion for art. They eventually discovered that they shared a passion for clay and pottery.

Early in their marriage the season of retirement was upon them. However, rather than retire, Larry and Teresa decided to re-fire and study pottery together.

Clay became their shared, creative passion – truly “pottery with a Quist”. After a few classes in Black Mountain, NC they wandered into The Village Potters Clay Center which led to taking a surface design class with Melanie Roberson. We are happy to say that they’ve been with us ever since. They decided in November 2018 to join our advanced studies program to hone their craft and develop a full body of work. They leave no process undiscovered. They are both hand-builders and wheel throwers. They explore every firing technique and they create pieces with beautiful surface designs. All their creative outlets from other seasons in life are referenced into clay. Some pots are uniquely Larry’s, some are uniquely Teresa’s, and some of the lines are blurred as they influence each other so beautifully.

The journey that is this glorious life of unexpected opportunities led Larry and Teresa to each other, and we can all share in their story through their beautiful creations. What you always encounter when you share time with Teresa and Larry is gratitude, generosity, and a double dose of kindness. Check out Quist Pottery and be encouraged that all our lives are moving toward unexpected joy-filled encounters and opportunities.

-Sarah Wells Rolland