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Jean Elton

Jean Elton Studio

"We love making ceramic vessels that represent a break from symmetrical objects with earthy glazes, yet retain a faint echo of functionality. We like to explore flowing, dramatic shapes with either bright colors or elegant whites that make a unique design statement in discerning collectors' homes or offices."

Jean Elton is the husband-and-wife team of Lois Jean and William (Bill) Elton Barker. Lois loves creating beautiful objects in 3-D; Bill enjoys the engineering aspects of the discipline. Lois also loves to ask, "what if...?" One day, she asked this question, and Bill responded that the mold wasn't built for that. Lois tried it anyway, and the result became one of Jean Elton's most popular designs. Bill is now a fan.

Lois and Bill collaborate on a computer to create the dramatic lines of their proposed object. A model is then rendered on a 3-D printer or hand assembled using laminates. Bill makes plaster molds from the model and Lois slip casts her "canvases," which she then paints or otherwise decorates. Because these are large statement pieces, overhead cranes are needed to move the molds.

At age 6, Bill accompanied his mother to the College of Ceramics at Alfred University, where he first tried his hand at pottery. He later graduated with an MBA from the Tuck School of Business at Dartmouth College. Lois has participated in and led numerous ceramic workshops. She received formal ceramic training at the University of Hartford, Connecticut, and also studied with Wilhem and Elly Kuch in Germany.

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