Artist Sarah Gutierrez — Ceramics is Her Thing


A few weeks ago I had the pleasure of photographing ceramics artist Sarah Gutierrez at her studio in the Museum of Ceramic Arts (AMOCA) in Southern California. Sarah is wild about pottery. It’s definitely her thing. She works from two studios, and is an artist in residence at AMOCA. That means she gets her own private studio space, and buyers of fine pottery seek out her work and snap it up!

Sarah is a Pasadena native, and discovered her passion for working with clay in 2000. Her work is heavily inspired by the Arts and Crafts movement, which can be found all around the Pasadena area, and is most notably represented by the iconic Green and Green Brothers Gamble House, where Sarah’s work can be purchased at the Gamble House bookstore.

The Gamble House

Gamble House - Pasadena, CA

If you are not lucky enough to be in Pasadena, you can also see Sarah’s work on her website, Sassafrass Pottery and on her Facebook Page. Watching Sarah throw a pile of clay on a wheel and transform it into a beautiful vase was an inspiring experience. There was no question that she is obsessed with her thing, and has become a masterful artist.
Drawing the form to cut.
One of the greatest reasons for exploring the things we love is being able to get a glimpse into the hearts of others. We cross pollinate, and our enthusiasm enriches those near us. I know that I will never be a potter, but watching Sarah work made me appreciate the artistry involved. Her excellence made me want to take better photos so that I could communicate her skill and the joy she takes in her work.
Sarah shaping the rim of a jar
So as you are finding your thing take a little time to recognize the things that may not be yours, but that might inspire you to expand your vision. In this way you will begin to build a rich community of friends who take joy in the uniqueness of each other.
Sarah with her Work


Filed under ceramics, Photography, pottery, Uncategorized

11 responses to “Artist Sarah Gutierrez — Ceramics is Her Thing

  1. dlmartin67Denise

    I just checked out her website and love the jars and vases with the trees. Absolutely beautiful.

  2. Jerry Abrams

    Whoa – just checked out her .com and not only is she beautiful, but so is her work! Stunning! Love pieces with the cut-outs, and the cypress pines too!

  3. Sarah’s work is stunning. I own (and treasure) a small vase with crows on it that she made.

  4. Dale & Marty

    Sarah and Sassafrass Pottery have put AMOCA on the map as far as Arts and Crafts Movement enthusiasts go. What a wonderful team they make! Most of us had never heard if it before Sarah became resident artist there. Now it’s on all our friends’ California bucket list.

    Love the pictured piece with the oak trees and the cut outs!!

  5. Jade Vanderslice

    I own 7 pieces of Sarah’s work, most purchased at the Gamble House. There is a timelessness to her beautiful art. My Sassafrass pieces work equally well in my very contemporary office space and at home, in my period furnished Asian influenced 1915 Craftsman Bungalow. I look forward to my 8th, 9th and 10th purchases!

    • Congrats on your growing collection! I’d love to take photos of your house Jade–it sounds lovely. I’m looking forward to owning one of Sarah’s pieces myself!

    • sandie fowler

      I know a couple with a house that sounds similar to yours, jade, they are in San Francisco. It is one of the most spectacular homes I’ve visited. I also believe they had a couple of pieces of Sassafrass Pottery on their mantle. This very talented potter obviously gets around!

  6. K. Wolfe

    Sarah’s work is killer!! Love everything she does!!

  7. Allan Elliott

    I fly out to California from Mississippi for the LA Pottery Show, and Pasadena Heritage’s Craftsman Weekend show each year and line up a few hours before these shows start just so I can be one of the very first ones in the Sassafrass Pottery booth — crazed collector — that’s my thing, baby!

  8. Cassie

    Love Sassafrass!!!
    There is a lidded piece, white ground with blue wistaria, at the Gamble that I have been dying for! Maybe it’ll be under the Christmas tree for me this year. 🙂

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