Anonymity in handmade

An observation from Julie Rozman’s Design-Realized blog, The Anonymous Pot:

    After eating from handmade pots two or three times a day for the last five months and drinking handmade far more frequently; after beginning to consider making some functional work to add to the cupboards; after using a friend’s collection of handmade pots; in handling and re-handling literally hundreds of pots while helping glaze, wad, and load them into a kiln: I realized my appreciation for the anonymous pot.

    It’s just a good, beautiful object. Doesn’t matter who made it, just that somebody did. Doesn’t have to shout the name of the maker. Maybe better if it doesn’t. So the functional object is the foundation for a composition. If it’s a composition that stands alone, so much the better. (Possible? Very architectural question, that.)

My thought in response: It’s more important for the artist to take pride in his or her craft than to desire credit.


About pcNielsen
Paul Nielsen founded The Aesthetic Elevator late in 2005. He owns a piece of paper, located somewhere in his house (not on the wall), stating that he earned a B.F.A. from the University of Nebraska around about 2001. While there, he studied studied architecture, graphic design and ceramics, graduating with a degree in studio art. Paul presently serves as communications manager for a small non-profit doing their print design and marketing. He spends as much time sculpting in his studio as possible — which is not nearly enough. Visit his website at

One Response to Anonymity in handmade

  1. Sarah Jane says:

    I like this idea a lot. I think there’s something uniquely sweet about using and enjoying the work of unknown hands — the object becomes a kind of anonymous gift that the artist sends out into the world, trusting only that *someone* will find it useful and beautiful.

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