The seemingly bottomless well of creativity that exists within the COUTURE community never ceases to amaze and delight us! In addition to the works of art rendered in precious metals and gemstones that we are thrilled to showcase at COUTURE, we are continually learning about other artistic endeavors for which our designers have a strong passion.
Designer Josette Patterson who, along with her husband Mark, has been a staple of the COUTURE community for over two decades, maintains a strong passion for working with porcelain and making sculptures. Every year, Josette takes a 2 week hiatus from designing jewelry to go wood fire her sculptures and wares. These wood firings have taken her from Peters Valley, NJ to Flagstaff, AZ by way of Las Vegas, NV, and have allowed her to meet countless artists and students who, like Josette, are hooked to a technique that is at the very root of civilization.
COUTURE: What type of materials do you use on your sculptures and wares?
Josette Patterson: I use a special type of clay for my sculptures that has fibers mixed to it and can be fired to a temperature of 2400 degrees fahrenheit without distortion. For my functional pieces I use porcelain. I love the way it feels when you work with it and the color of the glazes on the porcelain.
COUTURE: You have a consistent “theme” in both your large scale sculptures, and your smaller functional pieces….is there a meaning behind these characters?
JP: My sculptures are built the same way as Korean potters would build big jars, with large coils they are pinched and paddled. I rarely glaze them, finding that the raw nature of a wood firing makes them look like peaceful unearthed treasures. If I had to open their eyes they would loose their serenity vibe.
My baby bowls are meant to be whimsical. When I engrave the designs and add the color I am always thinking about the connection of the bowl to the child who will use it.
COUTURE: What area of your creativity do you feel is satisfied through your sculpture work?
JP: I am one of those people who can’t stay still. I have to constantly challenge myself and every project I am involved in is a challenge. Working with clay was the result of a thirst for a continuous creativity that wasn’t fulfilled by just designing jewelry.
COUTURE: How did you first discover you had this passion?
JP: I was designing jewelry on a daily basis, and one of my teachers at Parsons had warned me that I was extending myself too much and designing too much. When you are young in your late twenties, you are vain. I thought my teacher was crazy. I eventually hit a block and decided to take a few months off. I told Mark that I was enrolling in a ceramic class with a Japanese teacher. It was the best thing I ever did. I’ve never had a creative block since, and I learned how to make ceramics and build sculptures!