Ken and Elsa Nekola
Ken Nekola has been a working potter for over forty years. He began making pottery while a student at SIU-Edwardsville and was hired as one of Rowe Pottery’s first production potters in Cambridge in 1980. He also spent two decades as a potter at Ephraim Pottery in Lake Mills. His current work is functional, wood-fired stoneware with Shino glazes and applied wood ash.
Elsa Nekola is Ken’s daughter. Growing up in Cambridge amongst a strong pottery community contributed to Elsa’s interest in high-fire, functional stoneware. She learned pottery through working with Ken, and taking classes through local pottery studios and Madison College. She enjoys the process-oriented work of pottery and is continually humbled and fascinated by what she learns from each firing.
Ken and Elsa’s current work is fired in a small wood kiln inspired by Fred Olsen’s fast-fire kiln designs.