red earthenware pottery
handmade for you by susan mchenry

I'm drawn to both the strength and vulnerability of clay, and it’s these qualities I strive to bring forth in each piece I create. With both my wheel-thrown and hand-built pieces, my goal is to create spontaneous and lively forms by stretching, pushing, and cutting the clay. Once each piece begins to dry, I apply colored slips (liquid clay) with loose, uncontrolled brush strokes.

My interest in clay seems almost primal at times, connecting me with a history that dates back millions of years, to the very essence of the earth itself: the decomposition of rock. I'm intrigued by how something so intensely fixed and hard can transform into something soft and malleable by the weathering of time and the touch of human hands.

There is an energy and life force in an object that has been created by human hands. My primary interest in working with clay is to allow a sense of aliveness to show through. I try to approach each form without being overly fixed on the outcome, but rather allowing the clay to direct me.

On a practical note, I like to make durable, sturdy pots that can stand up to daily use. All my work is food safe, dishwasher, microwave, and oven safe.

Click here to read my essay about handmade objects.