Formula for Success | Mea Rhee | Episode 119

Mea Rhee | Episode 119

Mia Rhee

Mia Rhee Containers with ElephantsMea Rhee is a working potter based in Maryland. Her work is modern and rustic, with Asian sensibilities. She launched Good Elephant Pottery as a part-time business in 2002, and grew it into a full-time business by 2010.

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Mia Rhee Vases

Mia Rhee Various ContainersHOW DO YOU KEEP YOURSELF INSPIRED?

I get asked that a lot and the answer is : I don’t know. I never have that problem of feeling uninspired. I feel inspired all the time. I have not reached the bottom of that well yet. After all these years I haven’t had the need to look for inspiration yet.

 

Mia Rhee Teapot

Mia Rhee Small Spouted BowlsWHEN YOU ARE CREATING YOUR WORK, DO YOU HAVE A DEEPER MEANING FOR YOUR WORK OR IS IT STRICTLY THAT YOU WANT TO MAKE BEAUTIFUL FUNCTIONAL WARE?

Yes and No. My deeper meaning is not about the pots. My deeper meaning is that I want to live an independent lifestyle where I can be my own boss and make things on my own terms. I think that comes through in my pots.

Mia Rhee Studio


Mia Rhee Plate with FishWHY CLAY INSTEAD OF DESIGN?

That is easy to answer, because it was so hard. I enjoyed the field of design and it was challenging a lot of times but it is also a field where you can reach the top when you are about 30 years old and I needed something that was a little harder.

 

Mia Rhee Jar with Crane

Mia Rhee CupsWHAT IS SO INTRIGUING ABOUT HARD?

Hard is just the skill level. Wheel throwing in particular is what I was attracted to. Hard in the fact that there is so much subtle appreciation. There are motor skills you need to develop before you can really control what you are doing.

Mia Rhee Containers with Elephants

Mia Rhee ContainersWHICH POTTERS REALLY INSPIRE YOU?

My heritage is Korean, so I get a lot of inspiration from the 12th century Korean pottery, that are really old, celadon, wood-fired pots.

My favorite contemporary potter is Robert Briscoe.  Also Teresa Chang.

 

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Book Cover
Mia Rhee Containers

A Single Shard 

 

CONTACT

GoodElephant.com

Mia Rhee Containers with Wire Handles

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  • Min

    Terrific interview with Mea. It was a true pleasure to hear such a well thought through business plan and its implementation. Very generous sharing of knowledge and wisdom. “energy breeds energy” I’ll have to remember that when I’m feeling lazy.
    Thanks again, Min