KAREN BORG                                                                     

In 1979 I went to Pratt Institute to study painting. In my senior year a friend suggested that I take a pottery class with her. I loved it! That was the end of my painting career, and the beginning of what I am still doing today. There was something about the fact that when I created something in pottery, I could use it in everyday life.

After graduation from Pratt with a BFA, I apprenticed with potter Judy O’Donahue, who was part of the Brooklyn Potters Group. There I was exposed to such greats as Byron Temple and Ragnar Naess. During this time I also worked in SoHo for the painter Howard Buchwald, and then for the sculptor Alice Aycock. While working in the SoHo world of galleries, dealers and dollars I felt eclipsed; whereas with my time spent in the potter’s world, I felt joy, inspiration and creative energy. Today this still carries me to each new exciting discovery of shape, texture, color, and material.

The practicality that gave me joy in making usable pots also drove me to enter the Masters program at New York Institute of Technology in the brand-new field of computer graphics (Macs were not yet invented!). Throughout that period I continued my apprenticeship to the potter. By the time I graduated, I was working full time in computer graphics, had stopped apprenticing pottery, and had started taking advanced pottery classes in studios in NYC and NJ.
One of the studios where I studied was the Old Church Cultural Center in Demarest, NJ. My teacher there was Mikhail Zakin, a peer of Karen Karnes. Learning from her showed me that time, life and my contemporaries were the best fertilizers of the craft. I settled in for the long patient journey.

I got married and moved several times, from NY to MA to CA to CT and back to MA. During that time my husband and I had 2 babies. I was a full- time mom and continued to pay for pottery classes in studios and art centers, fitting in hours as I could. Because of all the different studios I worked in over the years, I was exposed to many types of clay, glazes, firing methods and temperatures. Flexibility and countless ideas became a valuable part of the working process.

Several years later, with my family settled in Acton, Massachusetts, and with the babies in elementary school, I finally set up my own studio and pottery business, Cave Made Pottery (www.cavemadepottery.com). I start each pot remembering the instructions from my first pottery teacher at Pratt (Nancy LaPointe- UMass Amherst): each step is equally important and must be mastered to proceed with success, from wedging to cooling. It is with great joy that I go out there on school days and work with the rhythms, feelings and spirits that move me, until the kids get home.

I would be happy to let you know where my work will be shown or sold. Just drop me an email at info@cavemadepottery.com and I will put you on my mailing list. Or just check back here from time to time and I will post the information here.

- Karen