A naturally enriched day!
That was the way the potter’s life was described to me over 40 years ago. And that is the way I approach each day in the studio. Creating forms in stoneware or porcelain, functional or altered, is a relationship between the clay and myself. Each day begins without pretense of making specific pieces. Rather, it is like catching the wind just right as if you were sailing a boat on a large open body of water. Who can say which way the wind will blow? All my work can be summed up this way: “Eventually all our marks wash out to sea, but oh what fun we had in making them!”
During all the years I’ve worked as a studio potter, there have been many changes in clay, glazes and kilns. One thing that has stayed constant is the dance each time a decision is made in the creative process. At best it is a humbling experience.
The work of North Carolina studio potter Hue Parnell is heavily influenced by several sources. First, during the 1970s, Hue had the opportunity to work with a Korean whose family had been making functional village pottery for over 150 years. Such simplicity is reflected in many of the forms and glazes that Hue produces.
A second influence is the playful act of flying kites in heavy winds and at long distances. Hue’s altered raku pieces echo the tactile and visual movement of clouds and winds as kites dart, dip and sail through storm-laden skies.
Another lifelong inspiration is Hue’s fascination with the ocean and especially with the euphotic zone, the point in the ocean at which light intensity falls to just one percent of its value at the surface. The constant flow and sublte shifts of undersea currents and the movements of marine life in the hidden realm beneath the surface inspire the marks and altered shapes unique to Hue’s art.
Hue earned a BFA in Ceramics from Missouri State University. He is a member of Mint Hill Arts in Mint Hill, North Carolina. He is represented by Xanadu Gallery in Scottsdale, AZ.
Hue also creates artistic ceramic pieces for churches through our company, Faith Vessels Pottery For Worship. Hue and his wife, pastel artist Marla Rush Parnell, relocated their studios from Springfield, Missouri to Mint Hill, North Carolina in 2018.