Artist Statement
Contact Carla Potter:
Starfish and Bull Kelp
There is unabashed extravagance revealed by the receding tide. Flashing golden seaweed, heaps of tumbled, coiled and strewn kelp fronds create a slippery veil over the busy worlds of crabs, tiny fishes, anemones, invertebrates and every texture and color of starfish. It is a wet, three dimensional brocade that evokes the lavish costumes of can-can dancers or ladies of the night.

Everywhere there is a push and a pull. A brilliant tide pool full of darting fish and lumbering hermit crabs is surrounded by sharp, jagged barnacles and ruffles of rockweed. The tentacles of a flashy green anemone wave like arms in a gospel revival but implode when one reaches out for a caress. This is a landscape of excess and compulsive desire. Free of cultural restraint everything is by turns lolling about fully exposed in the sun and rain or slipping into watery suspension.

Though the look and feel of my work is inspired by life in and around the edge of the sea, the subject matter is closely paired with my experience of culture. I love to combine the pokey squishy surface of a sea cucumber with the dubious comfort and form of Victorian furniture. Haute couture with its dramatic forms and incredible variety is reflected by the flora and fauna of the land and sea. I am curious about the qualities that have become labeled masculine and feminine. Hard shells and soft underbellies, I have discovered my own through the course of squishing about in the clay.

For the past three years I have been experimenting with porcelain and high fire oxidation glazes. These glazes have a surface that is dense with an elusive depth and beauty. The coloration effects would be impossible to replicate with under glazes. It also provides me with a new avenue to explore the marriage of color and form unburdened by objective representation. This method, while still fully expressing my reverence for the world and my place in it admits it’s medium and more adequately exclaims the exuberance of my emotions.

Carla Potter 2004

Tide Pool Rock Oyster Pitcher detail
Carla Potter
“Rock Oyster Pitcher”
Ceramic Vessel  2000

©2004 Carla Potter

Carla Potter:
Ceramic Vessels