At .eluo. we feel so lucky to be surrounded by thoughtful, talented creatives who are doing their bit to champion sustainability in every sense, and ceramic artist Juliana Rempel is one such person.
Based out of Alberta, Canada, Juliana recognizes the undeniable connection between ceramics and life, and from the home to the mundane activities of the everyday, she looks for potential in these objects as registers of information and as the archetypes of our lives.
We worked with Juliana to design our .eluo. mask bowls, each one beautifully handmade and completely unique. Crafted using locally sourced natural porcelain clay, the curve shape of this beautifully textured naked bowl was thoughtfully designed to contain our powder for ease of use.
Juliana’s passion for pottery making stems from her belief that we remember a moment through the details that surround it and experience life through the objects that honor it. Because as the process dictates - everything slows down with clay.
Today, we sat down with Juliana to learn more about her journey and inspiration.
Can you tell us a little bit about yourself + your journey into ceramics?
I have always loved art but clay didn’t come into the picture until I was already attending Emily Carr University in Vancouver. I was hoping to take Industrial Design originally but really by accident signed up for a ceramics class. My urge to go into something that allowed me to make objects for the everyday coupled with the immediacy and intimacy that clay offered held my attention from the very first class. I could make objects out of clay that became part of peoples day and in turn allowed me in some way become part of it also. This was the beginning of my 14 year love story with clay, one that involves broken handles, chipped corners, flopped bowls, failed kiln firings, crazed glazes, tears and frustrations but also balanced forms, clean lines, muddy hands, ribbons of clay and forever friendships. As challenging as clay can be it is also just as rewarding.
Can you tell us a bit about the process - from design to finished project?
Clay is the beginning, it is soft and malleable, it is fragile and impermanent. Through the firing process clay transforms into a material that exhibits completely different properties. Ceramic is hard and fixed, it is strong and permanent. With each piece I make I learn more about these stages and about my voice within this process. My practice is constantly moving and constantly changing. Each piece inspires the next, there may be a mark that shows up in a mug and that mark ends up growing and adapting in each subsequent piece. It would seem that I’m always starting something new but each element within that new piece has grown out of every piece I have made up to that point.
What has working with clay taught you about both art and life?
Art is life and the pieces that I make are there to honour the moments that make it up. Also that stuff goes wrong, a lot, but if you just keep going the second try is always better then the first.
Aside from ceramics, what are your favourite ways to unwind?
My favourite ways to unwind revolve around time with my husband and my 3 little girls. Any time we get outside together makes me happy.
Aesthetically, how would you describe your personal style + taste? How does that translate to your ceramic work?
My personal style is simple, clean, eclectic and comfortable with bold splashes of colour….this is exactly what my ceramic work is made up of. I want my pieces to be touched, held, used, enjoyed.
Why was working with .eluo. was an alignment for you and what do you hope to create with your work?
The world is so fast and its hard to keep up with. Whatever is able to slow us down, to keep us in single moment for a little longer I feel is important in maintaining a balance and a peace. The ceramic objects I make all try and slow down moments by breaking them down conceptually or by providing specific and special objects that honour the rituals of our day, however simple and insignificant those moments may be. Eluo as a brand and as a ritual encourage the same mindfulness that I strive for within my own work. It is a pleasure to be in some small way a part of the journey.
Juliana - thank you for being a part of this journey with us.