Our friends Nadiia Shapoval and an artist Masha Reva create unique handmade objects inspired by traditional Ukrainian pottery. The brand Nadiia established in 2018, and as everything good, it has started from a friendship. Nadiia and Masha shared some thoughts on their creation.
Tell us how you started to engage in ceramics?
Masha: This was originally Nadiia’s initiative, she had long been proposing to do something together, and then at some point, I traveled to Greece, and stayed at Nadiia’s home in Athens for a few days. Nadiia found a pot on the street.
Nadiia: With a dead flower.
M: Yes, and came up with an idea of me drawing on it. The pot remained in Athens, and when I arrived back to Kyiv, Nadia offered to start a proper project together.
How would you describe your ceramics in three words?
N: Sincere, cheerful and Ukrainian.
M: Unique, honest, warm.
On your Instagram, you ask people to pose with your objects. How did they react to this?
N: The fact of the matter is that if I’m approaching just to take a photo, no one would ever agree, even though the objects reveal warmth and sincerity. We begin to communicate on a tactile level with a person, giving to hold a piece, communication immediately becomes warmer and better in a person's soul and posing is not a problem anymore. The essence of these objects is that they are provoking feelings between people, and it seems cool to me. Real clay gives a feeling of comfort, this is something that we have in our DNA. When people begin to touch it, they begin to smile.
I know that you do little sports. Are sport and ceramics somehow connected?
M: Yes, I can say that there is such a unifying line. I work a lot with the theme of the body because in general, it took me a while to accept and love myself and my body, I often reflect on this idea in my drawings. The body is smooth, imperfect, with asymmetrical lines and shapes. And I find our objects the same. I would say I have a unified concept to my approach.
City or village? Could you live in a village for a long time?
M: Ceramics is the integration of traditions into modern life, but this does not mean that we are promoting an ascetic lifestyle. On the contrary, these traditions are maintained and a calm and laid back lifestyle gives us the inspiration we would like to transform in a modern way.
N: A lot of work of many people is behind the scenes of this project, and we must maintain in the city if we want someone in the world to know about them. Also, there are many personal projects. Ideally, I would like to spend a lot of time in the village, but more on inspirational trips to Ukrainian villages.
M: We recently went to Ivano-Frankivsk, to western Ukraine, we were in Kosiv in the winter to feel, to see it all, it was a research trip. Unfortunately, we didn’t happen to see a lot of local ceramics, but we did meet people, it seems to me that it’s important to feel their spirit. And these impressions can be transformed into any object or project.