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paul eshelman

Medium: Ceramic

Booth #: GS55C

Artist bio: Paul EshelmanMy pots enter an age noted for frenzied activity and visual distraction. Functional pottery is my cultural attempt, through the material of clay, to bring order and human dignity to the merely physical act of consuming food and drink. As my pots are used daily, my hope is that they carry measures of quiet and nourishment for body and spirit. I imagine people at a dinner table, work space, or office cubicle where food and drink are served and humanized by hospitable, well-ordered pots.The pieces are made using a casting process in molds I design and make. The clay body is a red stoneware; the glazes are all lead free. Clarity is given to my simple forms by contrasting glazed and unglazed surfaces. Pure clean glazes render elegant presentation of food and drink.My developing artistic interests were directed along practical lines as I grew up in Iowa. Simple utilitarian objects guided me aesthetically. I received a B.A. in art from the University of Puget Sound in Tacoma, Washington and an M.F.A. in ceramics from the Rhode Island School of Design in Providence, Rhode Island. Since 1988 my wife, Laurel, and I have been living and making pottery in Elizabeth, a small farming community in northwestern Illinois. We have three children who all worked in the pottery during their years at home.I am grateful to have maintained a clay studio for over 25 years. My pots have gone out to enhance the lives of people across the country and are in service at the Alinea group restaurant, Roister, in Chicago and at Teaism in Washington, DC. The work has appeared in numerous books and magazines and has been displayed in galleries and museums including:American Museum of Ceramic Art, Pomona, CaliforniaFosdick-Nelson Gallery, Alfred, New YorkThe Goldstein Museum of Design, University of Minnesota Northern Clay Center, MinnesotaSan Angelo Museum of Fine Arts, TexasSchein-Joseph International Museum of Ceramic Art at Alfred, New York

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