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Meet: Wingnut & Co.’s Anna & Asuka

Asuka and Anna of Wingnut & Co. in their studio.

Do you need a moment of calm and reflection in your day? Have a look at the stunning ceramics by Wingnut & Co.

Beauty, simplicity, utility and individuality – their basic ethos comes through every piece they create. Which is why we’re very excited to sell their beautiful Studio Cups at Market Lane. We recently chatted with Asuka and Anna about how they got their start, and how and why they do what they do. 

Market Lane Coffee: How did Wingnut & Co. get started?

Wingnut & Co.: After graduating from the VCA in 2010, we both focused on our separate art practices. At that time, Asuka attended a short course in wheel-based ceramics at the Carlton Arts Centre. Very quickly, making with clay became an obsession for Asuka and at any spare moment – before work, after work, on the weekend – he would be in the shed, on the pottery wheel.

We both have backgrounds working with timber and, at that time, we were busy making tableware and furniture for our home and friends. Asuka was working full time as a furniture maker and Anna was working at a picture framer’s. As we gained more knowledge around working with different materials and learned how a small creative business can operate successfully, we started to consider starting our own studio in 2012.

At the time, trips to visit family in Japan provided Asuka the opportunity to learn from a potter in Northern Kyushu. Asuka’s focus on pottery was unwavering and so it was only natural that ceramics became central to the first range that we launched, very quietly, as Wingnut & Co. in 2013.

What is Wingnut & Co.’s goal or purpose?

We admire considered and practical design, and we try to reflect these qualities in our own work. We are attracted to natural materials, highlighted with simple glazes and brushwork. We aim to make pieces that can be used or enjoyed every single day.

What materials do you use for the Studio Cup?

We use Australian Stoneware Clay with a White Satin Glaze. Each cup is thrown on the potter’s wheel. Every handle is rolled out individually and attached to the body after the base of the cup is trimmed. The cups are dried slowly and first fired to 1000°, then dipped in glaze and fired again to 1280°. Each piece is made and fired in our workshop.

What motivated the shape and design of this cup?

We both wanted a cup with a handle – one that we could use all day, in our home and at the studio. We wanted a handle that was classic in shape but also robust and comfortable to hold. Each Studio Cup has its own characteristics, such as a tiny wobble in the body or a gentle twist in the handle. We like them all to be individual pieces.

Visit the Wingnut & Co. website to view more of their work.

Photo of Anna & Asuka by Lillie Thompson, and photos of cups (below) by Linsey Rendell.

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