Clay play

Cape Town-based stylist Alexia Klompje launched Klomp Ceramics earlier this year. She tells us about Klomp Collection II that celebrates the season.
Posted 24 Dec 13 By Design Indaba CraftProduct Design Interviews / Q&A Comments

You started Klomp Ceramics earlier this year. What led you to pursue this?

I've been doing ceramics on and off since I was a child and always loved it. I recently discovered I had a brain tumour, which upon removal left half my body paralysed. While recovering I needed a shift in what I did for a living so one day my husband asked me if I had to choose one of my hobbies to pursue what would it be? That night I heard a voice in my sleep and it said: ‘Ceramics’. The next morning I woke and from that moment making ceramics was all I wanted to do! That is when I started Klomp Ceramics. It's been a beautiful way to heal.

When and where does inspiration for the designs strike?

Inspiration is constantly striking! I take inspiration from everything around me: people, places, architecture, colours and nature as well as from what I'm feeling at any given time. I'm always thinking, designing, planning. Making ceramics has really opened me up to a wonderful flow of creative inspiration.

It seems you’re interested in geometric shapes and patterns. Where does this fascination come from?

I think this fascination comes from my background in architecture but I also feel like it's the combination of left and right brain. Geometrics just make a sort of sense to me.

What is your creative process to conceptualise the ranges?

It's a very intuitive process. I get a feel for what I'd like to create next and how I think it could work in a collection. And then the creative brainstorm begins. Collection No. II was inspired by the festive season and celebration. For me personally this time of the year is a really celebratory one.

What do you enjoy about creating something by hand?

There is something so primal about working with clay. In essence you're working with all of the elements - earth, water, air, fire. I love how this all comes together in my hands. Creating by hand is personal. It tells a story.

Who do you work with or do you work alone?

I work alone, in the company of my 'creative advisor' Bruce Lee, my Boston Terrier. He sits on my chair behind me while I work and peeks round my shoulder now and again.

Where do you work from?

I work from my home studio in the bustling Cape Town CBD.

What can we expect from Klomp ceramics in 2014?

An ongoing narrative.  More one-of-a-kind functional and decorative pieces that tell a unique story whilst still remaining design conscious. I'm going to explore colours and patterns, try different techniques and whatever else catches my fancy at the time! I'm really excited to be a creative in Cape Town in 2014.