Form Follows Function
Light pours from high windows into the vast commercial space that is Tribeca Potters, dancing through clay particles suspended in air.
Winding his way past the expansive view of the Manhattan skyline, beyond the communal work tables and four blazing kilns, Eric Bonnin lands at his station; pug mill and slab roller and throwing wheels guarded tight by high shelves teeming with his work, separating him from other artists and the hum of traffic below on 41st Avenue in Long Island City, Queens.
He sets classical music in his earbuds, or maybe French pop if he needs a rhythm – Christine and the Queens is a current favorite – and starts molding bread plates, glazing trays, and moving clay up and down on his wheel until it takes the shape of a bowl or a mug or a vase. He piles scraps of reusable material for the day to come, creates a production schedule for his next order, and keeps working away, quietly.