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Art in Act III and Beyond with Tom Radca
(Season 2 | Episode 61)
[Tessa] Tom Radca is a ceramic artist who has carved his own path in this world through his art. I met him at an art event in Coconut Grove, FL. We hit it off and I found his personality and his art really engaging. I wanted Tom’s energy on our podcast. And…. voilá, you get to hear our conversation about Tom’s art, career, and life.
A self-proclaimed “worker bee” Tom is passionate about what he does. He made a conscious decision to go into a field that he had fallen in love with. He was not going to follow in the footsteps of a father who hated his work.
Tom loves the single word that he hears day-in-day-out at his art booth… “wow.” And if you see the artwork on his site or on this page – you will say that word too.
From the first time I saw a potter creating a vessel on his wheel, I knew that this was what I wanted my life’s work to be. I began my career as a functional potter, making anything that could be used in the kitchen.
After seven years of production pottery, I hit the wall creatively and considered getting a “real job.” But the challenge drove me. Taking additional coursework, learning new techniques, and meeting potters who would become lifelong mentors shifted my creative focus from functional to decorative work.
Over the past 40 years, I have felt challenged to create large forms. My first attempts at 30″ plates yielded a production of 75 plates, with only 8 making it through the final firing. Frustration and discouragement were tempered by the challenge — just as my beginning attempts at life as a potter were challenged by trips to the pawnshop to be able to feed my family. My present-day challenge is the production of tall, columnar vessels. The kiln gods and I continue to do battle with this form. I truly believe the challenge is necessary — it tends to keep one humble
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