About Janel Jacobson

How do I explain simply 49 years of exploration and growth in my work?


Since moving to Sunrise, Minnesota in 1975 as a potter in love with making pottery for daily use, I have worked in stoneware, porcelain and wood.  Sunrise Pottery was established in 1975.  I began to be a potter in 1970.

During the first several years in Sunrise, I made functional wares mostly from stoneware clay.  The continuum for change for my explorations in clay grew from the mid 1970's through 1995 as a compelling desire to illustrate themes from the natural world around my home evolved.  I pursued carving detailed images first as surface drawings in clay with knife and slip, then shallow relief carvings on vessels with celadon glazes, and moved on to small sculptural 3-D porcelain pieces.

In the summer of 1995 wood became the material of choice because it offered more to the development of each small sculpture.  I focused on carving very detailed, small, sculptural wood pieces for two decades. Those years were interspersed with enjoyable episodes of making pottery for sale through our studio showroom while keeping alive the love of making pots until I returned to full-time pottery making in 2016.

The joy of using pots every day goes hand in hand with loving to make useful pots for others to incorporate into their daily lives.

My current work focuses primarily on using porcelain clay to make useful wares such as drinking vessels, bowls, plates, covered containers, and an assortment of things that can be used in the kitchen for food preparation such as berry bowls, colanders, and juicers to name a few.  I do love using stoneware clay so some pleasant times are spent using that clay as well.

Recent work may be seen on this web site's shopping pages.  The porcelain glazing this year explores celadon glazes, and carbon trapping glazes, using both our studio’s carbon trap and Malcolm’s Shino.

Tree Frog in the Grape Vines ~ 1988

Tree Frog in the Grape Vines ~ 1988

I have maintained an archival web site janeljacobson.com for my earlier work in carved porcelain from around 1988 to 1995, and carved wood from 1995 through the end of 2015.  Each section has pieces that are available for purchase.  That web site is not modern enough to have a "shop" feature for the wood.  Anyone interested in purchasing a small wood sculpture from that web site should contact me privately.  I am happy to have the Carved Porcelain now available for purchase on this web site:  Carved Porcelain 1985-1995

Janel Jacobson's Stamp