In 1975 I took my first pottery class. It has been a love affair ever since.
Coming from a rich heritage with a deep appreciation of food, celebration, and setting a beautiful table, making pots capable of bringing beauty and pleasure to the daily rituals of eating and drinking was an easy decision to make. I feel functional pots connect people on a very human level. In a world that is fast paced and oriented around convenience in life rather than quality of life, hand made functional pots can slow things down, allowing the user to enjoy the important aspects of human interaction and self-introspection. Hand made pottery is a complete human expression and I truly believe contains the soul and energy of the person who made it, and that with use, a real human connection is made.
My formal education of ceramic traditions and a community of potters espoused the Bernard Leach Japanese aesthetic and philosophy. However, what really makes my heart soar is the joyful vivacity of Italian maiolica… it remains a tremendous source of inspiration and delight to me. And so, from the very beginning of my pottery making I was drawn to strong simple shapes and surface decoration with a passion for color. For me, red earthenware clay used in combination with brushed and painted colored slips and underglaze colors has been the perfect medium. The white slip base serves as a canvas for decorating the leather hard surface area with fluid line calligraphic brushwork utilizing the interplay of positive and negative space on the surface. The final fired transparent glaze application is characterized by brilliant, rich, watery colors and a lush surface which has a depth and richness that lower firing temperatures permit.The imagery creates a sense of movement in the composition and strengthens its relationship with the form. I love the meditative process of immersing myself in the whole piece – throwing, trimming, decorating, glazing and firing… all are considered equally.
Ultimately, I strive to create objects that are visually stimulating and offer the promise of domestic enrichment providing you with a piece of pottery that you, your family and friends will treasure for many years to come. When you gather with the people that you care about around a table that includes my pottery, think of the simple tangibility and intimacy these objects produced for the kitchen and dining room that sets them apart from other art forms.
Large platters, bowls, mugs, etc. can be particularly impressive when given as gifts for special occasions.
Marie Elaine studied Ceramics at Antioch / Columbia Visual Arts College in Columbia MD from 1980 to 1984 with independent studies at Corcoran School of Arts in Washington, D.C. and The Maryland Institute of Art in Baltimore , MD. Further ceramic studies expanded to workshops of master ceramists Walter Ostrom, Linda Arbuckle, Lisa Naples, Don Reitz, Joan Bruneau and an apprenticeship at Greenbridge Pottery in Dayton, MD from 1991 to 1994. She retired in 1994 from The Maryland-National Capital Park and Planning Commission, Graphic Designer, and moved to Florida where her ceramic work was exhibited in juried competitions throughout the state.
Marie Elaine maintains her studio in Cape May Court House, New Jersey.