36 Craven is a lifestyle shop in the heart of Old City, Philadelphia. They offer a distinctly curated selection of primitive antiques, contemporary textiles and unique artwork for the 21st century home. Named after the only remaining residence of Benjamin Franklin’s in the world, 36 Craven is informed by the past, inspired for the future and respect our Philadelphia roots.
Statements from selected artists.
My first studio pursuit was in painting, and I continue to be inspired by both contemporary and historical paintings. I approach the surface of a pot as a painter, brushing colored slips over the raw terra cotta surface, layering multiple glazes after bisquing. When looking at a finished piece, I like to see back through the layers to the beginning of the process. I aim for the speed, the pulse, and the tempo of making to be revealed in the pot. Throughout my thirty-eight years of working with clay, I have tended to work intuitively, encouraging a great deal of collaboration with the clay. Experiencing the clay as a living material keeps each piece fresh for me.
Joseph Pintz’s functional and sculptural ceramic work explores the role that domestic objects play in fulfilling our physical and emotional needs. Inspired by his Midwestern roots, Pintz creates mundane forms based on utilitarian vessels and other implements associated with the hand. In the process, the dense meaning of these objects is transferred into clay. I strive to capture the aesthetics of vessels and other objects that are painstakingly carved out of solid materials such as stone or wood. I find that working in a reductive manner allows me to find the form more intuitively. Although this way of working is impractical at times, it highlights the unrefined qualities of the clay.
My studio was originally a cow milking barn built in the early 1900's. It sits behind our house, of the same era, and overlooks large corn and hay fields. The fields are in a constant state of change, going from plowed earth, to lush growth, to bare stubble, to the vastness of winter. This rural setting makes it way into my pots. The various textures, colors, and lines that make up my surroundings become surface treatments, glaze combinations and cut outs. My process as a studio potter expresses a cycle of making and firing framed by daily family life.
I make pottery because I love the process of its creation. I pay close attention during each part of the process in an effort to make pots that are thoughtfully considered. My work is designed for everyday use and is inspired by folk pottery traditions across the world. German, Korean, early American pots all have a wonderful energy that I try to capture in my work. I use dark stoneware clays with layered slips and glazes to achieve a surface that has a deep, atmospheric quality. My pots are complete when they are in service, bringing a sense of human connection to the user.
Repetition has a significance that goes beyond the idea of production. It clearly grows out of the necessity to connect in the now and to create pots of physical vigor, ease and accessibility. My pottery occupies a sense of purpose, to create objects within myself and true to myself. The examination of utility generates my sense of design and involves all of my creativity. I focus on the directness of my work as an avenue of expression. It is important that my pots offer accessible avenues of understanding and clarity of function. To me, I hold these pots to be self-evident. I wish my pots to express the same gratitude as I receive from the cycle of making. I am a potter; the rhythm of labor is my focus.
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