As artists, who are looking for inspiration, do we try to follow current trends to make our work commercial, or do we follow our inner “voice” and make things that feed our creativity, regardless of whether they sell? This has always been questions I ask myself when starting a new year at the studio. I think it’s always nice to do a little research on current trends, whether we want to follow them. They may provide some type of inspiration.
The good news is that handmade goods and artisan items are making their way into our homes and our hearts, and as potters we could not be more pleased. Shopping local is growing nonstop, and small businesses and artists now have a chance to compete with the big guys. The hand-made feel provides extra warmth and coziness in our homes. This trend is a complete contrast to the sterility of the sleek, shiny pieces of furniture that were very popular a few years ago.
Pottery is making a huge comeback (did it ever really leave or did people just stop paying as much attention to it??), and now we want it everywhere. Custom pieces with imperfections and patterns are absolute favorites. This isn’t breaking news, but pottery will continue to be a popular trend in the new year, along with anything sculptural or handmade. People are looking for unique home accents, real art to make their space feel personalized to them.
Over the last several years’ people are starting to move away from their love of “shiny”, hard surfaces. Highly polished granite, glass, mirrors and cold steel surfaces are giving way to more “homey” materials like weathered wood, rusted metals and matt finishes. How do we translate that aesthetic to our work? Matt glazes and imperfect earthenware finishes? Earthy colors, wood fire finishes and “crater” glazes? It’s all food for thought as 2017 looks to be another good year for pottery and ceramics.