Saito Hiroshi Thin wool, Rouketsu Dyeing
Oribe Chawan by Suzuki Goro
Ken Price, Peter Voulkos, and John Mason ceramic
We are big fan’s of Emilie Halpern We first heard about her work through one of our favorite galleries, Pepin & Moore. After digging a little deeper, we found out that when Emilie isn’t focusing on photography or collages, she somehow fits in the time to make beautiful ceramics. Pepin Moore has a really nice selection of her ceramics on their second story. With the graciousness of Pepin Moore, we now have some Emilie’s work. We highly recommend you going to Pepin & Moore and looking at ALL of Emilie’s work.
Q: Could you describe the kind of pottery you make and do you have a style?
A: I make stoneware. I throw my pieces on a wheel. Later they are high fired at 2350 degrees Fahrenheit in a gas kiln, in a reduced atmosphere with no oxygen. I’m inspired by Japanese pottery, and mid century pottery from California (Harrison McIntosh, Otto & Gertrud Natzler). Some other loves are Lucie Rie, Lucio Fontana, Fausto Melotti, David Korty, and Shio Kusaka.
Q: There seem to be 2 styles of pottery that we got from you, can you explain each? the white with blue paint and the the darker pots.
A: The white with blue is cobalt carbonate applied with a paint brush on a white clay body that’s then been dipped in a clear glaze. They were inspired by Japanese Arita pottery which has that same blue underglaze on white clay. The darker pots are a clay called Black Mountain with a Korean Celadon glaze. I fill the vessels with glaze and as I pour it out it creates the designs on the exterior. The glazing process is much more gestural and free, it leaves more to chance. I enjoy that loss of control, and letting the materials lead.
Q: Did you start making pottery prior to your photography or vice versa?
A: Pottery came much later for me. Over the years my artwork has become more conceptual, so I was progressively spending less and less time making things, and more time thinking about them, or having them fabricated. Ceramics was a way for me to get back to getting my hands dirty, and exploring materials, which was why I originally fell in love with making art. It allows me to get lost in the moment, and let go of the idea of a finished product and just enjoy the process.
Q: Any shows coming up?
A: My work is currently exhibited at the Armory Center for the Arts in Pasadena in a group show titled ” Facing the Sublime in Water, CA” curated by Irene Tsatsos. I have an ephemeral sculpture titled “Drown” in the main space, and my photograph “Nocturne” has been blown up into a billboard. More of my pottery is on view at Pepin Moore in Chinatown in their upstairs space called “Second Story”. I will be doing my third solo exhibition with them next year, which will include photographs and sculptures.
Q: Does living in LA have influence your work?
Q: What are your plans for thanksgiving?
A: It’ll be my son’s first Thanksgiving, we’ll be spending it with family locally. I love food, so I love Thanksgiving.
Art Smith spiral neclace.
Art Smith (1917-1982). Trained at Cooper Union, Art Smith opened his first shop on Cornelia Street in Greenwich Village in 1946. One of the leading modernist jewelers of the mid-twentieth century, Smith was also an active supporter of black and gay civil rights, an avid jazz enthusiast, and a supporter of early black modern dance groups.
Art Mutha FN Smith! Yeah!