Podcast: Conversation with Hollis Engley, Hatchville Pottery

You can stream or download the podcast here.

Hollis Engley lives and makes pots in Hatchville, a village of the town of Falmouth, which is the westernmost town on Cape Cod in Massachusetts. In this podcast we talk about his work, blog, sales strategies and he talks about a workshop with Takashi Nakazato.
You can access Hollis’s blog here. I first became interested in Hollis after finding his blog linked to a different blog I read. I left a comment and then noticed the flood of visitors I still get to my website and blog from his. 30-40 a day isn’t unusual. Hollis mentioned Meredith Heywood in the podcast. Meredith  is the organizer of the “Clay and Blogs: Telling a Story” show that opens Oct. 1 at the Campbell House art center in Southern Pines, NC. It’s a show of 50 potters from around the world who both make pots and blog. She also writes the Whynot Pottery Blog.
Takashi Nakazato is a person I have seen and heard a lot about. He comes from an august family of Karatsu potters in Kyushu. His father was a Living National Treasures.  Takashi  is the 5th. son  so I can’t say if he expected to be named the next LNT. I have seen pictures of him in ceramics books here in Japan, shirtless and wild haired  and heard about how much of a wild-man he is. I have never understood Japanese potters calling him a wild-man as a sign of admiration or respect. It has always been said with some disdain that both interested and confused me. I immediately thought of the photographer Minor White, one of my favorites, when listening to the stories about Nakazato from Hollis. Minor White did a series of photos when he was a respected and old figure in photography. They were photos of him in very silly and strange poses. I don’t like to call up the ghost of Zen but Minor said it was a respected tradition in Japan for old teachers to try to break out of the revered position they are put into by doing a silly swansong. I don’t know about the tradition but it is important to think about Nakazato in context of his cultural seat. The son of a very highly respected LNT, expected at the very least to show great culture and restraint. With all the pomp and formality that goes with that position it is great to hear Hollis talk about how Nakazato made a sushi roll out of his younger drinking partner.

You can download or stream the podcast here.

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