Julie Wiggins is a full time studio potter living and working in Charlotte, North Carolina. She is represented by Lark & Key Gallery, Crimson Laurel Gallery, The Collector’s Gallery, and more. Her work has been featured at the American Craft Council and the Mint Museum of Craft + Design, as well as several national conferences and exhibitions, including NCECA. Julie has nearly a decade of experience as an educator, including courses taught at Clayworks and The McColl Center for Visual Art.
Originally from Jacksonville, NC, Julie graduated from East Carolina University with a BFA in Ceramics. In 2005, she received an honorary degree from Jingdezhen Ceramic Institute in China, where she focused her studies on traditional Eastern techniques. In 2006, 2010 and 2013 she received a Regional Artist Grant to purchase a treadle wheel, pug mill and electric kiln. In 2014, she received a CSA(Community Shared Art) grant through the Arts and Science Council to make 50 tumblers for 50 collectors. Also in 2014, she expanded her business and moved into anew home studio where she lives with her husband Dave in Charlotte.
Julie has fond memories from growing up, surrounded by warm blue skies, expansive beaches, and bright green farmland. Though her work as a ceramicist has taken her to Europe, Mexico, Morocco, and beyond, she still holds a place in her heart for the easy-going Southern lifestyle. Today, as an active member of the clay community, she continues to support herself as a studio potter and educator.
As a studio potter, I make objects of enjoyment that strike a balance between uniquely functional forms and narrative design. Whether hand built or thrown on a treadle wheel, my porcelain vases, flower blocks, lidded jars, plates, teapots, noodle bowls, and more are both playful and aesthetically complete. Lilly, lotus, tulip, or dogwood patterns accent most work, occasionally paired with birds or fish.
Using a variety of beautiful transparent glazes, these surface designs stand out clearly yet gently with my inlaid, gestural lines of black slip. Some work also highlights carving patterns, lightly pooled glazes, or thoughtfully designed flares such as asymmetrical edges, decorative coils or clay “buttons,” and distinctive rectangular feet.
My work is inspired by travels in Europe, Mexico, China, and Morocco, as well as studies of traditional studio pottery techniques. Together, these influences help me create a body of work that reflects memories, movement, and love of life. I am also enamored with contemporary architecture, repeated patterns in nature, and the simple power of an intuitively drawn, fluid line. With so many sources of inspiration, I find that my creativity expands in layers, always inviting me to dig deeper and push in new directions.