Sometimes we fight destiny. Sometimes we create it for ourselves. Sometimes we do both.
My conversation with Andy Grossman was a bit of reminiscing (we both graduated from the same high school in 2000), and yet learning more about him. I learned that he'd been creating ceramics just about his entire life, thanks to his parents, and even was the TA for one of the ceramics teachers in our school. After school, though, he decided to go in a different direction and learned about sculpture and woodworking.
His life came full circle when he spoke to his wife about pursuing a career in ceramics, and she fully supported him. He created his own studio space, acquired a few kilns, and the rest, as they say, is history.
It was interesting to hear his approach to marketing, whether festivals were worth it, and how he was able to start creating a name for himself. His approach to pottery is unique, because not too many of his pieces look the same. A lot of ceramics artists out there develop a niche in the pottery world and just stick with one or two styles, but Andy said that he gets bored easily, so that's why a lot of his pieces don't necessarily "match." He has made incredible molds that look like mini barrels and if you didn't know the artist created them, you'd think they'd been mass produced in another country.
I loved the insight that Andy gave me into just how intimate the art of pottery is. As he told me, "What other art form do you touch with your lips?" here's definitely a different view of ceramics and just how useful it is in our life. It's nice to look at paintings on a wall, but paintings on a mug that you hold on a cold day, with a hot beverage inside to warm you up, and your lips caress the edge as you gently blow on the tea to cool it off... if that's not an intimate, practical art, I don't know what is.