In last year’s Simple Cup Show at Kobo, Birdie Boone’s contributions sold quickly and generated inquiries from admirers. Starting Saturday June 21, Kobo at Higo will show her work alongside fellow New Mexico potter Betsy Williams.
Birdie Boone is a ceramic artist with a particular interest in personal identity, food, and modern lifestyles. Known for her minimalist handbuilt tableware and atypical glaze colors, and declared her intent to be a potter at the age of 6. Birdie grew up in the slow culture of southwestern Virginia and the fast culture of San Francisco, but currently lives and works in Santa Fe, New Mexico.
1. If you could only use 3 words to describe your work, what would they be?
soft, intimate, minimal
2. You are known for using atypical glaze colors. Could you tell us a little more?
“Color, like emotion, is subjective, complex and mutable.” – Carole Crewes, author of Clay Culture: Plasters, Paints and Preservation
Johannes Itten, who developed and taught the first color course at the Bauhaus, thought of colors as ‘primordial ideas’. I think of thoughtful combinations of form and color as the most persuasive means of accessing a user’s senses. These collaborate to create a complex visual depth replete with connotations. This sense-full ideology requires only that the user be open to its possibilities. Thus, my pots are not only useful objects, they are also subjects that have the ability to affect their users’ sensibilities and to act upon the domestic spaces they occupy.
3. How does living in New Mexico impact your work?
The most influential thing about living in New Mexico has been the skies, especially at sunset. The colors I see in the sky tend to be directly absorbed into my color palettes, almost without thought. I think it’s also worth noting that New Mexico’s relative lack of water has influenced me in a surprising way: for the past couple of years, I have had a definitive crush on water. Both sky and water are ‘complex and mutable’ and thus perfect subjects for me to investigate.
4. Do you use your own ceramics at home? Other artists’ work you enjoy using?
I do use my own work at home. Most often, we use my square dinner plates, but they are all seconds! I have a lot of pots made by other ceramists and I love them all, but currently, I reach most often for a Matt Repsher or an Eric Jensen cup.
Birdie Boone’s ceramics will be on display at Kobo at Higo alongside the work of Betsy Williams from Saturday June 21 – Sunday July 13.