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Meet Mira Lanz of MCL Ceramics in Pasadena

Today we’d like to introduce you to Mira Lanz.

Mira, please share your story with us. How did you get to where you are today?
I grew up drawing with my mother. She was an artist and we spent a lot of our time creating together, I often took art classes in school and over the weekends growing up. I started drawing animals I would see walking down our street at night, anything from skunks to coyotes, and when I’d show it off to my family, they were able to recognize the image and that’s where I truly think I began to fall in love with the concept of art-making.

From there, I just kept up the practice and tried all avenues of work- mainly painting, installation, video, and sculpture. After high school, I spent a year or two working as an artwork framer (Hi Aaron Brothers!) while trying to figure out my next move, and that’s where Art Center College of Design just came into view. Art Center has brought me lots of new challenges but has expanded my view on my practice, and on my character as a whole, in a way I cannot be more grateful for.

Has it been a smooth road?
I would have to say no! In third grade, I had a ceramics teacher that would judge everyone’s work, one by one, on a wooden stool. He would then proceed to smash the pieces with a hammer if he didn’t like it. Third grade! So I ironically never liked ceramics! It wasn’t until a couple of terms into Art Center that I decided to resist my resistance and try clay again. It wasn’t pretty, or fun at first at all, it was quite sad if I’m being honest, but clay’s meditative nature and methods gave me something I haven’t always found within my practice- certainty and true material collaboration. I’m grateful for the road that has got me to where I am now as an artist and a person, plus smooth roads are never as fun of a story to tell!

So, as you know, we’re impressed with MCL Ceramics – tell our readers more, for example what you’re most proud of and what sets you apart from others.
MCL Ceramics explores a relationship between personal concern and surrealism. Through a combination of hand-building and wheel throwing, this brand’s main aim is to challenge the line between functional and sculptural. Often experimenting with states of flux in the form of symbolism, movement, and material manipulation, MCL Ceramics plays between the psychological nature of physical touch and vulnerability as a conceptual whole, overall embodying an ebb and flow within practice and reasoning.

Let’s touch on your thoughts about our city – what do you like the most and least?
LA is an amazing community full of talent, ambition, and creativity. It truly is a booming place with endless opportunities, possibilities, events, and people! That equally is exciting and intimidating, especially just starting out within the professional environment of the art industry. While so many people and things make the climb that much harder, I really believe it just makes it that much more rewarding when you find your footing and really stand on your own, truly, with your work.

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