As we finished our studies, our passion for working the clay evolved, and we were absorbed by the illusion of creating an atelier and working on it. We wanted to create unique pieces of great quality with which to enjoy everyday life. We had a lot to tell and a means to transmit it: pottery.
We were (and are) nonconformists, restless and (a little) stubborn, so we insisted until we opened our first workshop. Since then we live and work in Itsaso, located in the heart of Gipuzkoa, surrounded by nature and good companies; A place of inspiration and creation.
Each piece we create has our personal imprint, our way of seeing the world. They tell a story about us, our surroundings and our culture. We also tell the stories that we have lovingly listened our amamas (grandmothers) tell. Thus, each piece encloses a story that we would like to share with you.
With the experience acquired during these 25 years, the way we work has evolved. However, we have maintained the essence that defined Pott from the beginning: to create unique products by hand, unrepeatable and personalized, pampered throughout the execution process. After these years, we are still excited to open the oven and discover the result.
We met, of course, red handed, with hands covered in clay. We met at the Deba School of Arts and Crafts. Despite being very different, we were united by the passion to work the clay and the concern to preserve an ancient trade.
Our next steps were in Manises (Valencia), where, as we gained more knowledge, the idea of creating an atelier had more presence in our conversations.
And so we did. It materialized when they offered us the old school of Itsaso. Provided with second-hand material and overflowing enthusiasm, we moved to the hometown of Maite's ama (mother). With a rainy and warm welcome from the itsasoarras, Pott was born.
In 2004, a few Basque potters created the EKG collective (Euskal Keramikagile Garaikideak, Basque Contemporary Potters). From its formation we continue proposing, organizing and carrying out events, courses and exhibitions, with the aim of creating a space for dialogue and understanding that energizes and activates the panorama of contemporary ceramics.
Maite Salutregi Aramendi
In high school I made abstract drawings that were important to me and today they continue to be important, sketches that capture ideas that I will later materialize in my creative work; I am a potter and sculptor. I was 25 when I discovered ceramics at the Deba School of Arts and Crafts and two years later curiosity led me to study in Manises; For five years I studied the framework of artistic ceramics, including the machinery, suppliers and professionals of this discipline, a fascinating world.
In Itsaso, together with Jone, we gave shape to our greatest dream: to have our own space, we created Pott Keramika and thus began our adventure.
We have never stopped learning; our work teaching both adults and children gives us hope and another meaning to our work. The challenges presented by our clients encourage our creative work.
The art world, has always marked a path that I recently traveled at the University of the Basque Country in Leioa. I graduated my Art Degree with a Sculpture Minor, which I have enjoyed very much since I reached maturity. The new tools that I have acquired give me security when I build corporeal pieces that try to give answers to questions and reflections as a way of expression.
Personal note: I like to work the garden, collect its fruits and taste them in a bowl that’s made with love.
Jone Urain Larrañaga
In 1996, as I was about to graduate high school and without knowing very well what to do next, I was lucky enough to attend a promotion of the Deba (Gipuzkoa) School for Arts and Crafts, where they showed us some slides (it was so long ago!) of the work of the school. I remember the images of the teapots; their round shapes and the fantastic enamels touched me in such a way that I decided to take that path.
In this long journey with the clay and with Maite, 3 years in the Deba school, plus another 3 in Manises (Valencia) and 25 years in Pott Keramika, I have been experimenting, acquiring knowledge, discovering new ceramic techniques to be able to work better, and fullfill my need to create new forms and finishes that I love.
Personal note: I like the color green, the smell of cinnamon and lavender, and I enjoy discovering artists, potters or literary authors that surprise me.