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SKW Pottery Lab is where art meets science. SKW became a ceramic artist in the middle of her career as a research psychologist and has brought the scientific method into her studio where creativity meets experimentation. She experiments in clay by mixing her own clay bodies and glazes as well as varying the form and functions of her wares. SKW studies the interaction of glaze combinations with clay bodies.
In 1994, she sought the art of pottery to balance the pressures of academic administration and the fleeting nature of technological scientific research. Today’s technologies and scientific research results are outdated before they reach publication but a stoneware pot is a thing of beauty and function for millennia.

As her skills developed, SKW found that science followed her from the research lab to the art studio. She used her skills as a scholar to understand the history and chemistry of pottery. Her psychological research also inspired her pottery as shown in her installation CyberPsychoCeramics. For SKW there is no tension between science and art. They each inform the other as she creates through experimentation.
Below are some of the values of our lab studio. SKW has been making pots since the mid 1990’s. Ronald Webster, her business partner and husband, does photography, website design and construction, shipping, and other collaborative support. In 2015, they built the SKW Pottery Lab studio and have sold pottery on Etsy since then.

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Process vs. Product

SKW believes that the process is as important as the product. She mixes her own clay bodies and glazes. The process of designing and creating unique ceramic objects bring joy to the potter.

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Form and Function

A good pot is artistic and functions well a vessel. There is no tension between form and function. The pots made in the SKW Pottery Lab should be beautiful and be able to “hold water.”

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Science and Art

The scientific method informs SKW’s work as an artist through the values of curiosity, organization, empiricism, and determinism. She experiments with the interactions of body, form, decoration, and function. Each pot is a research result so that there are no failed pots, just data for analysis.

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Handmade means Unique

SKW makes each object different from the others. Even tea pots are designed with families of unique cups. Handmade items should reflect the hands of the makers. This is especially true for SKW Pottery Lab one-of-a-kind pots.

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High-Fire Aesthetic

SKW specializes in high-fire stoneware pottery and strives for glazes and textures inspired by Chinese Song Dynasty pottery, Korean Koryo Pottery, and Southwest Native American Pottery.

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Touch and Sight

Pottery should feel as good as it looks. Pots are meant to be touched. They should feel good to the hands and even the face as you touch your lips to the rim of the tea bowl or mug. Handles should be comfortable and give you confidence as you use the pot.

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Pots have Personalities

The clay collaborates with the potter so that sometimes a pot seems to say, I want a face, or this is the handle for me. Playing with the clay to produce pots with personality is a large part of the potter’s joy.

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"I use chemistry (substance), psychology (form), and fire (physics) to create functional art." SKW