As many of you have probably heard, Joan announced that she’ll be closing Pour Horse Pottery. Otto, the Shetland pictured above, will be the company’s last production run horse.
It’s almost impossible to overstate the impact Joan has had on the model horse industry. She realized the dream so many of us had, that one day we would once again have fine earthenware horses in the tradition of Hagen-Renaker. Over the years she pushed the boundaries of both mold-making and glazing, releasing production pieces once thought impossible given the limitations of the medium.
Had that been all, it would have been an impressive achievement. But Joan has always been committed to sharing what she knew with others. Virtually all of us currently working in earthenware horses were taught by her. Whether it was glazing, or mold-making, or casting or setting up a studio, she gave information freely to anyone who asked. The rich, close-knit atmosphere of the model horse ceramic community owes a lot to the tone she set from the beginning.
I would not be doing what I am doing today without Joan. She’s been my mentor for ten years now. She’s also one of my closest and most treasured friends. I’m excited for her as she looks towards the future. She’s told me that she wants to do more experimenting, more pushing of what we can do with our chosen medium. I am looking forward to seeing what she does.