Your local New Zealand potter Chrissy Purdom
Before moving to Omaha Beach in 2000, Chrissy had been a potter for over 25 years and lived in a few places during that time including a home that she and her father built in Ohaeawai in the Far North for 10 of those years.
In 2002 she set up Omaha Living, in Omaha Beach just before the causeway with fellow potter Mark Brockie as a place to showcase their own pottery, furniture, sculptures and paintings.
After a few years the business had changed and grown so she had a break from pottery to manage running the busy Omaha Living successful homeware, fashion & gift store.
In around 2010 Chrissy relocated the business to the Omaha Beach group of shops, a much smaller store but a more easily manageable size.
Unfortunately, in January 2019 she had to give up her shop not long after twice having major heart surgery.
After taking some time out to recover, she returned to her earlier passion of working with clay.
She soon found that a lot of things had changed over the years but fortunately the basics hadn't.
Having to re-start her body, adapt to new clays and develop new glazes were some of the unexpected adjustments she had to make. Chrissy had purchased a new kiln back in 2015 but not had an opportunity to use it, so she was very excited to have it finally wired up and operating.
Initially there were a few technical problems, for example with glaze crazing on a few of her early trial pieces. To discover why this was happening with some and not others, Chrissy had to retrace her steps and work out that she had used two different clays and only one of these had the problem. The re cycled clay had worked well, but what was it? It was so long ago!
She knew that many discoveries are found through accidental mishaps and learning to accept some things and going with the flow can with a bit of luck, bring rewards later.
This has generally been the way she works through an idea and fortunately many of her friends and family are the lucky recipients of these many trials. Chrissy may from time to time keep something from each new firing to use every day which can help her to keep developing the idea.
Chrissy still enjoys the process of starting with a simple ball of clay and ending up with a piece that is a working piece of art.
.... and now
Chrissy uses a variety of clays, depending on the glaze colours and effects she is after.
Presently she is working on developing different coloured glazes on a brand new white NZ made clay and also an Australian made white clay.
Winter is always a good time to be testing new ideas and preparing for the busy summer season and Spring will see these ready to purchase.
Chrissy uses two different techniques to produce her work.
One is throwing the clay on the pottery wheel, making round mugs, bowls and dishes.
The second is a slab/ hand-building technique to produce different ranges and shapes of platters, plates & dishes.
This work began with her Coastal Range and is rapidly expanding. Her dishes are all designed to suit a variety of food styles and to enhance even more our favourite meals.
Using a variety of clays & glazes for both techniques, she usually work in 2 to 3 week modules, making the work and fitting in glazing & firing during that time and hopefully fitting in a swim or two!
You can contact Chrissy by phone or use the Contact page.
09 777 4008 or Mob 021 913851