For Pride Month, we’re highlighting some of the people and brands you should know about all year long.
If you're obsessed with all things decor, you might also have a folder on Instagram dedicated to all the cool creators out there. We certainly do. Empty shelves? Lackluster coffee table? Add a ceramic piece. Looking for a cuter morning coffee experience, or a new home for your plant? Also great chances to buy a new handmade piece.
And in honor of Pride Month, we're looking at queer ceramicists you can support this month and always. Here are just 13 ceramicists we think should be on your radar. Click that follow button on Instagram, bookmark their shops, and get ready to find your new favorite ceramic piece.
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Whether it's a dish, planter, or vase, Lana Abou-Assi infuses each of her handmade pieces with a rustic and relaxing vibe. We especially love the sunrise hues of the bowls above — al fresco meal anyone? Abou-Assi creates her pieces at Pot, a Los-Angeles based POC-owned pottery studio.
2. Ayumi Horie
Portland-based Ayumi Horie splits her time between creating her own work (in mediums like porcelain and earthenware) and supporting the artistic pursuits of others. Through projects like The Democratic Cup, she "encourages active civic engagement through pottery," as explained on her website. The ceramic above has a cool feature — it "reflects in two different languages," as the artist explains.
One look at Los Angeles-based Anjelica Aluowicz's tiny figures and you'll automatically feel a little more joyful. "Though my ceramics are playful they are also a meditation on the necessity and functionality of art and craft in immigrant communities/communities of color," Alubowicz wrote in a recent post. You can see more of her mini dancers and small cups in her shop.
Los Angeles-based ceramicist Ninon Choplin created neenineen in 2017 and has been making "wiggly ceramic things" — as described on their website — ever since. You can find mugs, pitchers, planters, and more in saturated colors that are sure to make your day a little brighter.
Alexa Villanueva describes Lexa Luna studio as "a place to explore my inner dreamscape, questions I have about life and environments, and where I get to create what I wish to see in the world." With a background in interior architecture, the Seattle-based maker creates earthy, painterly pieces. Villanueva also finds inspiration in tarot reading and muses.
Exploring creativity since their early childhood, Jasmine of Ashé Ceramics makes pieces exploring their ancestral heritage. The Oakland-based maker crafts pieces that take inspiration from African masks or hand drums, like the pieces above. The bright colors and intricate patterns make these pieces eye-catching and intricate from every angle.
Montreal-based artist Mérida Anderson creates earthy, sculptural pieces that run the gamut from mugs to plates to vessels. You can find their brand, YYY, stocked at spaces like Yowie and their Instagram is always a great source of color inspiration.
8. Coco Spadoni
Artist and educator Coco Spadoni creates pieces with symbols that speak to "the human experience of embarrassment and our own personal shortcomings, tributes to failed love, and re-imaginings of queerness," according to their website. The mugs, planters, tumblers, and more in their signature style are all about whimsical colors and curvy shapes. The Seattle-based artist offers virtual private lessons and curated the window and online exhibition "Queer & Dear" for Saltstone Ceramics.
Inspired by "unexpected beauty, modern interior design, and organic textures," as stated on her website, Bri Alberts crafts dinnerware, planters, and more for her brand, Lyon Lips Ceramics. Her speckled and geometric patterns, combined with mostly neutral tones, make them perfect for any decor style. Alberts makes each piece in a northeast Portland all-women community studio.
10. Rosa Friedrichs
Rosa Friedrichs first created a mug with the words "I'm gay" for a friend "who was frustrated with people assuming she was straight," according to her Etsy shop. The North Carolina-based artist creates most of her pieces using the sgraffito technique — a method of scratching into a surface to create patterns and designs — to highlight natural motifs.
11. Alex Simon
A planter in the shape of a heel? Yes, please. Portland-based Alex Simon creates whimsical pieces like this one, along with mugs, incense holders, and planters. Keep your eyes on her Instagram to see when the next collection drops.
12. Aram Guzman
The swirling colors and earthy simplicity of Aram Guzman's pieces quickly catch your eye. Guzman has also taught Spanish-speaking wheel throwing at Pot LA and often shares insights into his process on Instagram.
13. Dustin Yager
Artist Dustin Yager has exhibited his work in spaces across the U.S. and internationally and also runs the pottery business Ceramics + Theory. The brand has a tongue-in-cheek sense of humor, whether you're shopping for a new mug, pin, or vase. When he's not creating, Yager often teaches group courses and private lessons.
Virginia Felix describes her work as "decorative and sculptural vessels using the unpredictability of clay." Whether it's a mug, vase, or incense holder, these objects lean into the power of curving shapes and minimal hues.
15. Clay Complaints
Danni Martin cites '90s cartoons and fashion as just a couple of the major influences for their whimsical ceramic pieces. Their brand, Clay Complaints, is comprised of pieces like a cow print planter, checkered stemless wine glasses, and mugs with rainbow handles.
16. K.B. Ceramics
Vermont-based maker Kate Butt creates items that she hopes "inspire people to take moments from their busy lives and enjoy the small things we do in each day," according to her website. You can find home goods like pasta bowls, mugs, whiskey cups, and more in her shop.
17. Ayesh Kanani
The rustic-meets-geometric vibe of Kanani Pots immediately catches your eye. You can find mugs, plates, pots, and more. "My work is informed by my lived experiences as a queer person of colour and my work background in LGBTQ+ advocacy work and disability arts," ceramicist Ayesh Kanani explains on their website.