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Meet Mia Schachter

Today we’d like to introduce you to Mia Schachter.

Every artist has a unique story. Can you briefly walk us through yours?
My background in dance and theater constantly informs my art practice. My recent work primarily deals with space and the fear and stigma around taking up space as a woman, identity and self-narrative, with an emphasis on materiality and use. I prefer to zoom into tiny intimate moments rather than tell elaborate stories. With ceramics, this often looks like an elevation of the mundane and an enhancement of small daily rituals, and in my theater and performance work, this has manifested as an effort to slow down real-time and bring awareness to the subtlest movements we make unconsciously. I’m drawn to what we say without speaking and intense–and perhaps radical levels of–nostalgia.

Please tell us about your art.
Ceramics is one of the more ancient forms of craft. When I sit at the wheel I feel connected to the past, but I have to be as present as possible to keep my hands steady and remind myself to breathe in order to bring an object into life for the future.

Conceiving of an object, crafting it with my hands, and then participating in every step of the process until I have a finished work is a remarkably gratifying experience, paralleled only by the feeling of giving it away.

Paperclip Pottery was named by my mom, Susan. She chose it because of my obsession with paperclips as the epitome of efficiency in functional design. I frequently find new ways to be more efficient in my work, both with materials and my own energy. My goal with Paperclip Pottery is to uplift daily ritual in the home, and elevate domesticity to an art form.

$1 from every item I sell wholesale and $2 from every retail sale goes to HOPICS, a homeless outreach organization in Los Angeles.

Given everything that is going on in the world today, do you think the role of artists has changed? How do local, national or international events and issues affect your art?
Ceramics has had a resurgence lately in large part due to what I believe is a link to the rise in awareness around mindfulness practices and secular ritual. It’s so easy to get caught up in politics in very negative ways: we get angry and frustrated, we feel guilty that we’re not doing enough, we feel hopeless and helpless.

Functional ceramics helps us slow down and find the art behind the object we hold in our hand. A beautiful cup elevates a cup of coffee and can remind us of the whole chain of labor and how these objects arrive at this moment. In my life right now, clay is what keeps me from feeling paralyzed by fear. It keeps me creating, learning, and moving forward.

When I make work in clay I am careful not to put any more thoughtlessly made junk into the world. I try to share only what feels beautiful and precious. I’m grateful for clay every day that I work with it.

The work I make largely fights stigma and makes taboo ideas into beautiful practices, whether it’s smoking cannabis or masturbating. My hope is that my work elevates your daily ritual and removes any residual shame or embarrassment.

How or where can people see your work? How can people support your work?
My work is for sale at Botanica Restaurant, and online. I’m on Instagram.

Contact Info:

Image Credit:
Main photo: Clay Rodriguez
Cody Mackenzie

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