Summer Editorial

Studio Visit: Shino Takeda


Shino Takeda and her new creations
Must have a fan-it's been one hot summer in NYC!

the kilns-where the magic happens!

the vats-such hardwork mixing the glaze
clay and color samples for glaze

finished products
adorable spoons-new pieces available in our shop
bowl and hanging vase
salt spoon and dish/tea cup
As far as functional objet d'art, I love ceramics and have been in awe with the process of making them. The fact that they've been around for thousands of years, I sometimes dream of being on some archeaological dig finding an ancient Mesopotamian vessel.  So when I was in New York City last month, I couldn't miss the chance to visit the studio of one of our favorite ceramicists,Shino Takeda.And it only reinforced my admiration for the skill, hard work, effort, and time that goes into creating such beautiful objects. I love learning about the process since it's an adventure of discovery in itself-from using the hand built technique, initial bisque firing, the waiting time for drying, mixing the glaze (which I admit seems like a great arm workout), glazing (oh the colors!), more wait time to dry, filling the kilns, firing again (where nature and science come alive!), and voila! Nature takes hold and the piece comes to life, which may not always be what is expected or planned for. But hey I think that's what makes pottery really special.

It was such a pleasure to not only learn about the process but to meet the person behind the pieces. I'm honored to get to know such a talented maker such as Shino. She's warm, down-to-earth and cheerful. I enjoyed chatting with her over our yummy Japanese lunch like long time friends just catchin' up. She grew up in Kyushu Island and was exposed to ceramics and art at an early age. Trained as ballet dancer (amazing!), she transitioned into the world of ceramics initially as a hobby.  Shino is now involved in a joint venture called Katakana with fellow ceramicist Romy Northover. It's a design/lifestlye collaboration presenting home wares and supper clubs.   

I truly enjoyed getting a wonderful glimpse of Shino's life as a ceramicist. The process is the perfect blend of the potter's hands and skill as well as science with an element of surprise.  Just like life, it's about the journey of discovery and exploration!

Thank you so much Shino for graciously sharing your story and studio with us!


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