Artist in Residence

More Than Just a Pretty Vase: Chelsea’s Pottery.



By: Danielle Cornely

Working in the arts since college has led me to meet many extremely talented artists and makers. At one workplace, I met Chelsea Goff, and we quickly bonded over our shared background in photography. The better I got to know her, the more I learned about her adventures in sculpting and pottery. When I found out she had her very own potter’s wheel in her two bedroom Atlanta apartment, I knew I had to see what she was creating. I was blown away by the skill and creativity of the pieces she created “just for fun.” More than just beautiful work, Chelsea’s pottery is a reflection of her experiences, personality quirks, and heartfelt interests.

oilspillrakuvase web

1. Tell us about your studio/work space.

“For now I have a small studio in my apartment. It has all the necessities — my boyfriend made a great work table and I have a wheel and shelves everywhere for storage. It’s my favorite room in the house because it’s flooded with natural light from all the windows. As far as firing and glazing, I’ve been enrolled at the Spruill Center for the Arts for a few years now. It’s a really great facility. They offer a lot of different clays and glazes to experiment with before you decide to invest in anything.”

rakuvase web

2. How did you get into your chosen medium?

“My grandfather has a pottery studio in the no-cell-phone-service region of West Virginia, so growing up we’d make coil pots and such. However, I didn’t really get invested until college when I signed up for a ceramics class. The first half of the class was devoted to handbuilding and the second to wheel-thrown pottery. From then on, I just kept taking classes. After graduating, I was able to spend a few months with my grandfather and learn more about the chemistry and technical aspects of clay and glazes.”

angrybirds web

3. Describe your favorite piece you’ve ever made.

“My favorite piece I’ve made is the Angry Birds piggy mug, primarily for sentimental reasons. I made the mug for my younger brother while at my grandfather’s just as a silly project, and it melted my little heart to see how excited he was when I gave it to him.”

rakubowl web

4. How would you describe your aesthetic?

“I consider my aesthetic very clean and elegant with a funky, messy moment. I think I’ve been really drawn to pottery as a medium because I can create really simple, elegant shapes while using an unexpected glaze as a contrast.”

plate web

5. What are a few of your favorite things?

“Favorite life things: thick wool socks, floor to ceiling windows, and a really good burger.”

horsehair web

6. So, what are you working on right now?

“Right now I work primarily in porcelain. I’m also in a skinny-neck vase phase — I could make them repeatedly and be content. Plus, Atlanta is known for its community of artists, with things like FAFATL (Free Art Friday: Atlanta), and I’m interested in becoming more involved with that. I’m woking on a few small, Atlanta themed pieces to start hiding around town as part of FAFATL. So keep an eye out for them!”

Chelsea is working on getting her Etsy shop up and running (seeabbottgo pottery), but can be reached by e-mailing [email protected] in the interim.

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