Where kitchenware and art intersect, there is Lawrence Kearns.
Kearns describes himself as a full-time potter who creates functional pottery also known as ceramics. He fashions items like casserole dishes, pitchers and mugs out of stoneware clay, which he said is similar to porcelain. He will also be selling functional items like berry bowls, versatile chip dip bowls, platters and coffee mugs. He also is unveiling some new pieces — one that he calls “chicken fingers,” a cooking dish for the oven that offers a unique style for baking a chicken.
“I guess if you looked at my pottery you’d say it looks organic in some ways; it has movement, so it’s not static — it doesn’t just sit there,” said the artists from his home and studio at Oxford, Ohio.
Kearns, who has been working with ceramics for 40 years, is one of more than 100 juried artists from around the United States who will compete in this weekend’s Destin Festival of the Arts.
This will be Kearns’ fifth year participating in the festival.
“I like doing the show and I like the setting right there by the ocean,” Kearns said. “And when you are from Ohio you take every advantage you can to enjoy the ocean.”
The former teacher and chairman of the art department now has a studio in Oxford for his small business, Lawrence Kearns Pottery. He sells some of his ceramics out of his studio, which is next to his house on 8.5 acres of property.
“I’m back in the woods, so it’s a great setting,” he said.
Kearns sells selected items from his ceramic creations on etsy.com, a website that caters to those wishing to buy or sell handmade goods. The price range of his ceramics is $10-$100. He’s been attending 22 to 24 art shows every year for the last 10 years.
“From this time until Christmas, it’s nonstop for me,” said Kearns.
When he isn’t sculpting a butter keeper or oval casserole dish, Kearns enjoys golfing, hiking, and biking.
For more information on Kearns and his artwork, visit his website at kearnspottery.com, or find his business on Facebook at Lawrence Kearns Pottery. To learn more about the festival, visit www.mattiekellyartsfoundation.org/destinFestival.htm.
“I think it’s a pleasant way of spending a weekend if people want to come out and buy unique gifts for Christmas,” Kearns said.