February 24, 2012

Visiting Frances Palmer, an Amazing Ceramic Artist

When I lived in Westport, Connecticut, one of my neighbors was the well-known potter and passionate cook and gardener, Frances Palmer.  Several years ago, I visited Frances at her home, which is also where she makes her fabulous creations, to tape a segment for my television show and at that time, her studio was in her basement.  Well, a lot has changed since then.  Frances still works at home, but runs her operation out of a spacious and airy old barn structure, reconstructed from pieces dating back to 1790.  She has also gained a large and devoted following for both her made-to-order potter’s wheel-thrown and hand-decorated pieces, as well as her lovely manufactured Pearl Collection, produced in collaboration with Buffalo China.  Frances explained that every piece is hand-cast, pressed, and glazed in one of the two remaining ceramic factories in the USA.  The factory dates from 1901 and she is the only artist to have ever partnered with them on a handcrafted product.  These Pearl dishes have a chip and crack guarantee and are dishwasher and microwave safe, as well as ovenproof!  That means that every piece may be used in the oven and then brought to the table.  Please enjoy this little tour of Frances’ studio and to see a YouTube video about Frances and her work, click here.