A Happy Surprise

Sometimes as I go skipping through the world of interiors I am delighted by something new.  An awakening.  And sometimes I gasp, whether audible or not, at the beauty that I find.

Much, much too often I find that I have made no discovery at all.  Not new, merely new to me and I am embarrassed by my lack of knowledge.

Such was the case when I visited Christopher Spitzmiller's studio when I was in New York this week.  Was I surprised by Chris's beautiful work, by his melt in your mouth glazes?  I was not.  Was I surprised that he was gracious and generous and lovely?  I was not.  I had heard that already.

What surprised me was that Roy Hamilton was working quietly in a small back corner of the studio.  What surprised me were his beautiful ceramics.

It was the subtle yet beautiful texture of his work in neutral that gave me pause.

Neither he nor Chris made me feel the fool when I admitted I was unaware of Hamilton's work.  Neither made me squirm that I did not know that his ceramics have found a place in the projects of Parish Hadley, McMillen, William Hodgins, Darrell Schmitt and Steve Chase.

Smiling and patient they showed me the work and let me feel the relief of the slipware without mentioning that over the last twenty five years Hamilton has been honored by the Rhode Island School of Design, had commissions from Tiffany & Co. and a collection of fabrics and wall coverings for Donghia.

No, they didn't.  Instead we chatted amicably about a fellow Kansas Citian who lives in New York, a name that comes up again and again.  

Chris lured Hamilton to New York from sunny Los Angeles, a move he might be questioning this week as the weather in New York is truly atrocious. 

His decorative pieces are designed as vases and bowls though he notes that the vases often end up as lamps.  They are currently working to create a website to feature Hamilton's pieces.  That is a happy surprise.

Top three images Christopher Spitzmiller's work with Clare Potter, the remaining pieces by Roy Hamilton.  His pieces sometimes pop up on ebay.