Artist Interviews

Meet Rolf Dahl

Rolf Dahl - Bowl
Rolf Dahl – Bowl
Please introduce yourself:
I moved to CO in 1967 to go to graduate school in cell and molecular biology. I’ve been retired for ten years after working at the University of Colorado Health Sciences Center for 35 yrs.  Now I do ceramic work in a converted garage in Wheat Ridge. I am married and I have three grand children and a son in the metro area.
How many years have you been a member of the Colorado Potters Guild?

3 yrs. – I joined the Colorado Potters Guild in 2014.

Rolf Dahl - Vase
Rolf Dahl – Vase
What does it mean to you to be a member of the Colorado Potters Guild?

I enjoy the communal activity with new friends and participation in the guild’s semiannual sale/show.

How many years have your been working with clay?

Off and on for 50 yrs.

Rolf Dahl - Plate
Rolf Dahl – Plate
Do you have a formal education in clay/art or how did you acquire your skills?

No, I am primarily self taught. I enjoy making things with my hands and trying things out.

How do you work (techniques/glazing/firing methods)?

I slab build with a commercial, white earthenware clay. The slabs are made with a rolling pin and formed into an object. They are glazed by painting on one of two glazes with a variety of colorants before being fired in a small electric kiln at home. This does not require expensive or elaborate equipment and I imagine it could be done in one’s kitchen.

What does “being creative” mean to you and how do you overcome obstacles or difficulties working in clay?

Make small changes by trying new things and see what happens.

Rolf Dahl - Casserole
Rolf Dahl – Casserole
Do you pursue any themes in your art work?

I make primarily tableware using bright colors and patterns. A primary goal is to engage the sense of touch. I am gratified when I see someone run their fingers over a pot I made. I hope that when someone touches one of my pots that they sense that the pot touches them back

Clay is a very sensual medium and it is important not to lose that when making things of it. So, texture, balance, heft, weight, softness, sharpness etc., all qualities you can understand with you eyes closed are important to me.
Rolf Dahl - Covered Jar
Rolf Dahl – Covered Jar
Who or what inspires you?

Fabric for the reasons above as well as it is used to not only cover something but to enclose that form.

Where do you see your work progressing over the next year?

I have no clear trajectory other than to continue making work.

Rolf Dahl - Plate
Rolf Dahl – Plate
Where can people find your work? (websites/social media/galleries?)

My page on this website, the our sales (next one is May 4-6) and by personal contact.