Kristin Muller is the Executive Director of Peters Valley School of Craft. Born in Panama to German and Chilean parents, she grew up in Argentina, Chile and the United States. Kristin holds a Bachelor of Science in Studio Arts from Southern Connecticut State University a Masters of Fine Arts in Ceramics from Hood College, is a member of Phi Kappa Phi and an accomplished ceramic artist. Prior to her tenure at Peters Valley she taught ceramics at two colleges, was Education Director of Brookfield Craft Center, Curator of the Lynn Tendler Bignell Exhibition Gallery and a Ceramics Studio Instructor. Kristin specializes in wood fired ceramics and maintains a studio with an Anagama hybrid kiln in Dingmans Ferry, Pennsylvania. She is the author of “The Potter’s Studio Handbook: A Guide to Hand Built and Wheel-Thrown Ceramics” published November 2007 and is co-author of “The Potter’s Complete Studio Handbook: The Essential, Start –to Finish Guide for Ceramic Artists published October 2011 by Quarry Books. Kristin exhibits her work nationally and is Adjunct Faculty at Hood College. For more information visit www.kristnmuller.com and www.petersvalley.org
A mysterious creative synergy is at play when I work with clay. While there are some days when every part of the process is deliberate, the most productive are the days in which I wonder, and wander off and lose myself in the process of creating. On these occasions thoughts are channeled through my hands, effortlessly, free from technical constraints. The interaction between self, tools, clay and environment becomes an expression of a larger intellectual and physical need, beyond my preconceived choices, and beyond the sum of all the parts. What emerges is a whole that brings the tacit into tangible focus.
A similar experience of synergy -- of another order -- attracts me to wood firing. The complexities of combustion, unpredictable color range and surface qualities are why I choose to wood fire. For over twenty five years I have studied the language of clay and firing to gain sufficient fluency to translate my thoughts into tea bowl forms, to invite a moment of intimate reflection.