By Tory Germann
Throwing pots and firing kilns may sound dangerous but it’s all in a day’s work for ceramic artists Barbara Guilmet and Samantha Tucker. The creative minds behind Muddy Girls Studio have turned their passion for pottery into a labor of love and made a home for themselves at Western Ave.
How did you meet? BG: We met through a mutual friend. I had a studio here.
ST: I was sorting glass for Barbara at her studio and sort of got sucked in (chuckles) She asked me to share the studio.
When did you decide to go into business together?
BG: It kind of evolved into that because originally it was all about having fun.
ST: It still is, we just need to make a little cash flow every once in a while to buy some clay.
Where did you get the name Muddy Girls Studio?
ST: The name just kind of caught on and everyone seemed to like it. We are pretty much covered in clay all the time.
How do you describe your work?
BG: We are going larger and more sculptural these days. Definitely more interested in making one of a kind art than production pottery.
Middlesex Community College recently unveiled a traditional Cambodian Kiln, have you been able to fire anything in it?
ST: Yes, We’ve been working with Yari Livan (MCC Ceramics Instructor) and we love it.
BG: I like it because its so natural and earthy.
Do you work together as a team?
ST: We have collaborated as a team. We worked together on our dinnerware set. We also work separately and look at each other’s work and notice the similarities.
How would you describe each other’s aesthetic?
ST: Barbara’s very creative and elegant and particular. I look at her shelf (where her work is displayed) and wish it were on mine!
BG: I think Samantha’s work is very organic. Part of me wants to say minimalistic. She has a really good eye for subtleties in the human form.
How did you become ceramic artists?
BG: I took it in college and fell in love with it. I’m still taking classes. I started out managing a paint-your-own pottery business and that led me here.
ST: I took a pottery class with Barbara and everything seemed to just fall into place for me. I love manipulating the clay and making it do something it couldn’t do.
Western Avenue studios has really grown in the last few years, what has been your experience working here?
ST: We were the only potters when we first moved in and now there’s five.
BG: We all speak the same language and it’s nice that we can all help each other.
When you’re not throwing pots or firing up the kiln, what else happens here at Muddy Girl Studio?
ST: We also teach. You can visit us at our studio and take one of our fused glass workshops during open studios which is the first Saturday of every month. The cost is $25.00 – no experience required!
WHERE: Studio 413 at 122 Western Avenue.
INFO: Learn more about Muddy Girls here.