About Peace Project Ceramics

Peace Project Ceramics was formed in 2003 by Jim Shrosbree, Professor of Art and head of Ceramics at Maharishi University of Management in Fairfield, Iowa.

Acting as primary designer for the project, Jim works with Mara Winningham a potter with years of studio experience, and a number of dedicated students who are involved in design input, production, and marketing.

Significant to the work is the way it is produced. Prototypes, designed in the studio and used as models in producing multiples, are made by our most experienced potters. Students participate in different stages of the process and as they become more skilled are given greater responsibility. This collaboration engages the tradition of a lively production process that allows the hand of the individual craftsperson to come out in the process of making. Some designs are followed more strictly, however, in other cases there is room for interpretation— leading to new discoveries, combinations, and variations added to the line of work we produce. New interpretations in the studio process may also lead to the birth of a new prototype design.

We offer three lines of work: one-of-a-kind work by artists; handmade work produced by experienced potters that follows an original prototype design created by our lead artists; and select flat work that is fabricated by an industrial pottery.

All profits made by the group, many of whom are volunteers, are donated to selected peace-creating groups in the world.



Scripps Essay Excerpt from “Parafunctionality”

Citing Peace Project Ceramics’ Collaboration.

by Tony Hepburn 

James Shrosbree has been a sculptor of importance for many years. His small, usually wall-bound objects have been referred to as eccentric. But that was never good enough. His work is often located amidst the likes of Ken Price and Ron Nagle. In referring to Price, the critic Dave Hickey once said that the problem of talking about his work is “that words do not stick to it.” The same could be said of Shrosbree’s work. But now we have something new. The space in and around the objects has always been a focus for him. In this presentation he is thinking of form as space and how to enter the space of functional objects and their utility.

"It is highly likely that use added to aesthetics might set the experience more deeply in the viewer by engaging a more complex range of human facilities and more of the five senses. More activity around the same event may be stimulating the brain in a variety of ways which cause a battery of physiological and psycho-physiological activities to be operating in what might be a layered event."

The plates in these pieces are...produced [by hand]. They are then handed to his research and development group, who have been provided with a palette of colors and some open-ended instructions as to their application—reminiscent of Sol LeWitt’s early wall drawings.

"Some time may be wasted and some work is lost, but in the long run things work out. More is learned under relaxed tolerances, the giving up of control to allow the personality of the collaborative maker to enter into my design. Proceeds
from this work come back to support its making and profits will go to peace-creating groups in the world."