In a world of Target and Ikea, handmade is still the best.


   Welcome to my site and yes, this has been a needed addition. In March of this year, I moved from my studio of 12 years to the Bell Arts Factory which is located on the “artsy”  westside of Ventura.  Big change, big space, and for the first time since grad school, I have a studio of my own with doors on it and a skylight!  For me, the move brought introspection, focus and the need for organization to get ready for the next leg of my journey as an artist.  It also signaled that it was time to go beyond Facebook .  I owe thanks to the supportive Gwendolyn Alley (The Art Predator) for helping me take this step toward a Web Page!  

  For those of you who know me, you’ll be wondering about the title of this post.  As you know, I am a big fan of both Ikea and Target.  I’ve collected salad plates from both which are used almost daily. Yes, we’ve had to replace a few here and there. We still use the 15-year-old matte black glazed dinner plates I made during graduate school. We’ve only broken one.  Ironically, our Burmese cat Kofi actually prefered to eat her food out of the “princess kitty” porcelain bowls I made for her as opposed to one commercially manufactured.  We were surprised to find that she actually has preferences about her dinnerware. Who would have thought?
   The point is, Ikea sells beautifully designed tableware which is cheaper and plentiful due to manufacturing processes . But there is something special about eating oatmeal, pasta, chili (or cat food), out of a bowl which has been lovingly created on a potters’ wheel. The same goes for enjoying your morning cup of coffee out of a mug created by the hands of another.  The cycle of human connection between artist and user is completed when you take that ritual first sip in the morning.  Cheers!

About Fowkes Studios

Up to her neck in clay, Dawne J Fowkes Cushing is a Studio Potter working at the Bell Arts Factory in Studio # 86. Born in Hawaii, she grew up in So Cal before relocating to Ventura in 1980. Working predominately in high fire porcelain and white stoneware, Dawne is an adherent to the tradition of making her own clay and glazes. Her work focuses primarily on the utilitarian aspects of the table top. Dawne earned a BFA from the Kansas City Art Institute and MFA from the Cranbrook Academy of Art. Post grad, she spent a year in Finland as a Fulbright Fellow studying Industrial Design at TAIK/UIAH (Aalto University School of Art and Design). Concurrently she was also engaged as an Artist-in-Residence at Hackman/Arabia OY AB.

One comment

  1. Doris Quigley

    WOW! The Wave coffee cup on here is beautiful. I am in awe that I know someone who has the talent to create such beauty.

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