"Fascinated by the potential of place to define and connect us, I draw subtle narratives on functional work to elicit memories of times past. I create a story you can hold in your hand forever." - Nicole Aquillano
Nicole Aquillano was raised in a small town outside of Pittsburgh, PA. She took an unconventional path to become a full time studio potter. After pursuing a career in civil engineering, she left to follow her passion and earned her MFA in ceramics from RISD in 2012. Nicole draws each image by hand directly into the porcelain clay with a knife and inlays a black underglaze. The high temperature of the kiln combined with a clear glaze overlay slightly blurs the drawing, much like a faded memory. She often references imagery from her past as a way to establish a personal connection. She lives and works in the Fort Point Area of Boston with her husband Sam and cat Luna.
In the words of Nicole:
Fascinated by the potential of place to define and connect us, I draw subtle narratives on functional work to elicit memories of past experiences. Through the labor-intensive act of making, I establish a close personal relationship with each piece. I am personally influenced by a nostalgia for my childhood home. Architectural imagery drawn from my photographic collection - inlaid with intense attention to detail directly into the porcelain clay body - prompts display of my work when not in use, as a meaningful addition to any collection. Blurred by the movement of glaze, the imagery is much like a faded memory. I am particularly interested in exploring the human need to maintain collections, as a way to preserve the past and satisfy the longing with which we inhabit the world: driven by a desire to hold onto that which will inevitably be lost. My memories and experiences are carved onto objects intended to be both used and collected: as a way to facilitate new relationships to fill the void left by that which we will never have again.