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Artist: Jan Gerdin

Jan Gulley Gerdin, ILLINOIS

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Artist Statement

Expressing through art feels more important than ever as technology takes up more space in our lives. As a graphic designer, I balance time on the computer with energy spent with the earth. For me this has always meant taking rejuvenating walks in nature and especially by water. Seven years ago, I touched clay for the first time and fell in love with the process of forming beauty from the earth—transforming elements from nature during atmospheric kiln firings into functional clay pieces. I’m interested in achieving lightness, brightness and sometimes translucency with porcelain. I enjoy incising line work into leather hard clay, then applying underglaze, painting and spraying glazes on surfaces after the bisque firing. Always intrigued by “graphic” imagery, recent work includes some patterned printing techniques. My work is mostly hand built from slabs.


  • 30 year career in graphic design –  https://www.bring-design.com
  • Seven-year student of ceramics at Lillstreet Art Center in Chicago
  • Graduate of University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign with a BFA in Graphic Design, 1983
  • Certificate in Drawing from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago, 2001
  • Lillstreet Gallery – work accepted to be sold – March, 2022
  • TrapDoor Studio Sale – June 2022 (upcoming)
  • Ravenswood Artwalk participant 2021


Jan Gulley Gerdin is a Chicago-based artist and graphic designer that brings light and brightness to her work and surroundings. Whether crafting an ethical business’s brand or by creating a porcelain vessel for daily tea drinking, she aspires to be a positive force in the world. Jan is interested in the interactions of line, shape and color, especially when these elements are tangent to one another and transformed during atmospheric kiln firings.

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