Handmade one of a kind plates satisfy at home as well as in these more commercial eateries and vineyards. Their sturdy uniqueness enhances the very carefully prepared food and experience of your food and wine visits!
- Station 1 Restaurant:
Inspired by a desire to create an environment of seasonal, artisinal, organic handmade food, Zu and Kristy, owners of Station 1 thought the plates that they served their well thought out food should be just as unique, local and handmade. So they commissioned me to produce all of their plates and bowls and serveware.
I wanted to make each plate different so it required deriving a lot of inspiration from different sources. I am often very inspired by vintage photographs--and I found some fantastic old photos
from vintage cookbooks and food magazines as well as new images that I loved. A
particular favorite was one of old Italian ladies making tomato paste by hand swirling
the tomatoes on a slab of marble--that image really stayed with me and made its way onto
a couple of plates in an abstract way. Other common themes are hands--hands play such a
huge role in food, craft and restaurants--it just melded so well with everything I was
thinking. So there are a lot of hands in fruit, suspended over food, interacting with the
natural world--a real ode to the sense of touch in cooking. Along with food imagery, I
used a lot of nature and birds as the owners requested this from seeing my other work. So
there is a real interplay of imagery that make up some of the subtleties of
cooking--food, touch, growing from nature, pleasure--all providing a real element of
surprise when the diner finishes their meal!
- Silver Oak Vineyards:
Napa Valley, CA
I admit it. I am a total sucker for the funky junk shops that hawk tourist goods that line the streets around a tourist attraction-the small coin purses, aging plaster dolls, coaster sets, they draw me in every time with their kitschy fun and folk art sensibility. I especially love the stands in Mexico and Central America that sell ceramic Mayan figures, ekeko guys carrying the abundance of a life of riches. There is something sweet and honest about those pieces and they forever remind you of the place you have been. Sadly, many or perhaps most of these are now made in China but continue to deceive us and make us believe they are made by hand locally..as they once were. If you are lucky enough to track down the real stuff- it certainly can be made nearby by local hands.
These images have always stayed with me and influenced my work. I love curios, icons, charms, small images that represent something meaningful, folkloric and useful and remind you of where you were, and have incorporated these images into my clay work.
Recently, I was commissioned by a beautiful winery up in Napa to do some pieces for them. I was immediately intrigued by the thought of creating a "curio"--something that represents the winery, its history and the beautiful land it occupies. A fine curio, a genuine local hand crafted memento.
Just as I coveted the ceramic Mayan statues in Central and South America, I wanted to create covetous ceramic pieces that would stay with people for generations to come- and remind them of where they were.
Here are some of the keepsakes I created for Silver Oak--if you are visiting Napa--pay them a visit--world class cabernet, beautiful buildings and a few good high end curios to take home...
- Woodward's Garden:
1700 Mission Street, San Francisco, CA 415.621.7122