One of my favorite things to do is search online for unique objects. During my free time, for hours on end, I obsessively search for something different, something special. There are some incredible creators out there and thanks to the internet and magical places such as Etsy, they are available to us wherever we are.
Most of the time I will start by searching for something specific, but often I fall into a rhythm where one search flows into another and I might find a great console table when I started off looking for some linen bedding.
Occasionally during my internet sourcing I come across something that makes me catch my breath. More often than not it is a one off piece that just happens to be right for a certain space or the right shape and size to complete vignette. Often, it is just one amazing piece amongst others that don't grab me in the same way.
It is one thing to find the right object for a space, quite another to discover objects that you want to design spaces around. Very occasionally, in my obsessive searches, I stumble across the work of an exceptional creator. These guys are not one piece wonders, they produce a consistent stream of exceptional, unique objects.
Paul Lowe is one such creator. I first came across his work on Etsy. A small, white jug caught my eye. it was exceptional in its construction - Created from a flat sheet of clay, with overlapping joints and a rough yet delicate white glaze. it was primitive yet elegant, rough and sweetly expressive at the same time.
There is an elusive beauty to Paul's ceramics. They are grounded in contradictions. Each piece on his Etsy store is similarly beautiful and intriguing: Deliciously wobbly cake stands and bowls, Salad servers that simultaneously look like cartoon drawings and museum objects, spice and soap dishes that somehow manage a balance between baroque and minimal. Though small, his pieces are so delicately powerful that they can easily become the focus of a room.
We visited Paul at his apartment in Brooklyn, where we watched him work. He is Norwegian - and an imposing presence, yet he is soft spoken a full of humor. the decisions he brings to his work are very deliberate, and a true reflection of who he is and his way of life. All of his pieces are molded by hand and not on a wheel, a technique which strikes me as a celebration of the direct connection between the materials and the hands of the creator, and one that might have been used by his Viking ancestors.
Once you meet him. the decision to work in this way makes perfect sense. The savoring of each moment, each material and each ingredient to create a piece, a body of work and ultimately a way of life is what he is about.
His ceramics are only one expression of this. His magazine, Sweet Paul, deserves its own post. For now, I will briefly say that it is a beautifully produced, collectors item publication, that focuses on seasonal recipes, crafts and travel.
To me, people like Paul are the way of the future. Creative entrepreneurs whose businesses and products are intertwined with their beliefs and way of life. This is the first of our featured makers series. It is our hope to create a directory, and a community of exceptional makers and to create a platform where their products are showcased.
You can find Paul Lowe's ceramics at:
Sweet Paul Magazine:
Follow him on instagram at: