Frances Kearfott

Clay / Lafayette, LA

Artist Statement

When I thought I was a writer, I spent most of my time finding new and strange ways to describe the ground that shaped my childhood. As a potter, I shape that ground. Some of my clay is locally sourced from my family's property, and working with it gives me the opportunity to connect my craft to my home and my memories growing up near the Vermilion River. Vermilion, by the way, describes the rich red clay earth in the area.

I make risky choices with my glazing and slip work, which offer unpredictable and exciting results, especially in a gas atmosphere. The processes that change the clay and glaze from mud and powder to earthenware and glass are as inspiring to me as the process of shaping the clay.

The entire messy event of a planter, cup, or vase is what I am offering in finished form from their place of origin in south Louisiana. I hope, also, to capture some of the fantastic natural geography of the land in my work as well.


As planted as my hobbies and passions are, I am a wanderer. I was born and raised in Lafayette, LA, but spent most of my adult life in the northeastern United States. I have worked as a farmer and gardener, and have a strong love for the woods and swimming in open water.

I started working with clay in the late 1990's. In 2001 I attended the first summer session with New Orleans Center for Creative Arts (NOCCA) and afterwards dabbled for over a decade. I now am able to produce work from my home studio.

I am grateful that I am able to enjoy the places and things I love with extraordinarily loving and supportive people.