PDL ARTIST SERIES: Ayumi Horie Tee
This 100% cotton unisex tee features custom art designed by professional studio potter Ayumi Horie from Portland, Maine. 20% of the profits from each sale are donated to Ayumi's charity of choice, the Water Protector Legal Collective.
- 100% cotton
- Unisex fit
Malloreigh is wearing an XS, and normally wears a 2 in PDL Alpha shirts.
About the Artist
Q: How would you describe the art you make?
A: While I make pots for a living, I also have a range of side projects that range from political projects like The Democratic Cup, curatorial projects like Pots In Action and public art projects like Portland Brick. I’ve also created a number of online fundraisers for friends and charities over the past 10+ years. At its essence, my job is to create frameworks through which people can connect to each other whether it’s a great conversation at a kitchen table with one of my cups or strangers meeting over a brick stamped with a story embedded in a sidewalk. Parallel with this work is the very intentional strategy of using cuteness in my ceramic work to engender a softer side of someone. People often create their own narratives around my drawings and since pots can act as talismans, these objects can support people in powerful and quiet ways that are often overlooked.
Q: How do you identify? How do you think your identity is reflected in your work?
A: I identify as Daboru. Daboru or Double is a term coined by Japanese mothers with mixed kids to describe the richness of two cultures, rather using the term Hapa or Half, a binary term that brings with it feeling of scarcity. As the child of a Japanese father and a Caucasian mother, I love this idea that pushes back on a state of in-betweenness. I also have always identified as a lesbian and I'm cisgender.
Duality has always been of interest to me, because in it there is something of a smorgasbord where one doesn’t have to choose just one thing. Multiplicity can exist without contradiction. Making work that is simultaneously soft and hard, or high-brow and low-brow, the pots I love best are authentically two or more things.
Q: Do you have a coming out story to share?
A: Inevitably as an artist and as a small business there’s a point at which personal values and professional ethics collide. I’ve been out since I was 18 and overt about my progressive politics in my business, but there was a time about ten years ago when I felt that it wasn’t enough to be passively honest. Changing the terms of the discussion, having representation, and challenging biases came to the fore for me when I made a video in 2009 that featured a romantic scene. For me, choosing two women was a professional coming out in a field where LGBTQ people had little visibility and no power. A lot has changed since then.
Q: Since we’re all about fashion… what’s your power outfit that makes you feel like the best version of yourself?
A: Haha, well, if I could just wear a uniform every day, I’d be very happy. As it is, my unofficial uniform consists of a Danish boot called Duckfeet, jeans, and some kind of plaid shirt, my favorite of which are made by Peau de Loup! I have grown increasingly curious about plaid patterns after seeing windowpane plaids and checks in old Japanese blocks prints and having plaid as a staple textile in Maine.
Q: What’s an unexpected fact about you?
A: It’s more of a fun fact, but the seafoam green crayon made me ill as a kid. While I still can’t stomach most pastels by themselves, I do love seeing what they can do within a palette of saturated and dirty colors. I love color!
Q: Which charity have you chosen to support with your design and why?
A: Water Protector Legal Collective. This incredible advocacy organization, which focuses on legal and legislative action, sits at the very practical intersection of environmental justice, climate justice and indigenous rights. The right to clean water is a human right and access to water will increasingly become the center of conflict globally. Supporting the resistance at Standing Rock over the Dakota Access Pipeline is crucial in attempting to set a progressive legal precedent.