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Biography

Rachael DePauw, originally from Kirkwood, Missouri, received a bachelor's degree in Political Economy from Tulane University in 2007. In her third year of school, DePauw discovered her passion for ceramics while studying under Professor Jeremy Jernegan. She received the Juanita Gonzales Prize in Ceramics from the Newcomb Department of Art upon graduation, and then completed a one-year apprenticeship at Potsalot Pottery with New Orleans artist, Alex Williams. Rachael DePauw currently teaches both high-school and adult classes at Isidore Newman School. She maintains an active studio career in New Orleans, Louisiana and sells her dinnerware and pottery at various locations throughout the country. Working primarily on the pottery wheel, DePauw uses a mid-range porcelain clay that is electric-fired. The black and white imagery on her forms is created by a technique called sgrafitto—a process where a top layer of black clay is applied and then carved to reveal the white porcelain beneath.



Artist Statement

Handcrafted pottery has the capacity to nourish both the home and the mind. Rachael DePauw's hope is that her work invites use and that her pleasure in making them is shared by those who use them.

Since graduating from Tulane University in 2007, Rachael DePauw has become increasingly influenced by both the aesthetic and philosophic concepts associated with New Orleans’ Newcomb Pottery tradition. Following Hurricane Katrina in 2005, Newcomb College was merged into Tulane University as part of their renewal Plan. Rachael DePauw was one of the last students who was able to receive an official degree from the H. Sophie Newcomb Memorial College.

Attempting to modernize Newcomb Pottery’s historic tradition through a process called sgrafitto, DePauw creates bold relief patterns and uses design motifs referencing Louisiana’s indigenous flora. On the pre-fired vessel, DePauw paints a thin layer of black, liquid clay and then uses a small tool to carve through the slip revealing the white clay beneath. The linear and abstract patterns created reflect New Orleans’ unique landscape and reference the blue and greenish wares of the Newcomb Pottery. DePauw creates the majority of her vessels on the pottery wheel with mid-range porcelain clay. Her husband, William DePauw, occasionally throws the larger forms.

Rachael DePauw currently lives and works in New Orleans, Louisiana where she maintains an active studio career and also teaches ceramics to both high school students and adults at Isidore Newman School.

2217 Valmont      New Orleans      LA      70115      504-533-8555      rtdepauw@gmail.com