James West was born in Santa Fe, New Mexico. His large family includes musicians, actors, painters, photographers, jewelers, and potters. He apprenticed and later worked in the pottery studio of Robert Brodsky and studied Art and Art History at the University of New Mexico 1989-1992. In the 1990s he worked in New Hampshire as a thrower in a large stoneware pottery studio firing with salt. James designs and throws our collection while managing overall production for Hanselmann Pottery.
Octavio Zambrano of Santa Fe, New Mexico, was studying Spanish and Fine Arts at the University of New Mexico when he discovered his passion for ceramics. Particularly inspired by functional ware, he enjoys making pieces that are meant to be used every day. Octavio is the newest member of the Hanselmann Pottery team, and throws a core part of our line and also assists in loading kilns, and packing.
Evan D. Small was born in Denver, Colorado, but raised on the east coast. At the age of 21 he woke from a deep sleep hearing his own mouth say the words “New Mexico”. He moved to Albuquerque sight-unseen to go to art school at the University of New Mexico; whereupon, he received his Bachelors and Masters degree in Art & Art History. He spent most of that time studying ceramics in both Western and Eastern (Japanese) throwing (pottery) practices.
Jessica Penrod was born in 1994 in Pinetop, Arizona. She moved to Albuquerque, to attend the University of New Mexico and pursue an education in Fine Arts and received her BFA with a focus in ceramics. She began studying as a painter, but shortly after learning how to throw on the potter’s wheel, she has transitioned into creating functional vessels. At Hanselmann Pottery, Jessi throws our core line of ceramics, glazes, loads kilns, and assists in social media marketing and online orders.
Christina Rockwell was born in Norfolk, Virginia into a Naval family. She traveled around the world, including Sicily, Italy, before settling in Albuquerque, New Mexico. While in high school, she found her love for ceramics. She continued her passion for ceramics by receiving her Bachelor of Fine Arts degree in Art Studio at the University of New Mexico in 2016. While at UNM, she studied Japanese style ceramics and has continued the technique for a total of ten years. Her studies of Eastern style ceramics took her to Japan in 2016, where she was able to learn and grow even more within this art form. Within the past year, Christina has continued her love for ceramics here at Hanselmann Pottery.
Esther Fredrickson is an accomplished classical flutist, playing professionally with symphony orchestras in New Mexico and Texas. But she's always had other interests as well, including ceramics, which she stumbled upon during her time in Eugene, Oregon. Her other endeavors include the adobe house she built with her husband, and a love of the outdoors. At Hanselmann Pottery Esther handles marketing, bookkeeping, customer service, online orders, and wholesale accounts.
Melissa Agate was born & raised on the Southern Coast of Australia. She takes care of all of our Graphic Design, Branding and Product Photography. Outside of Hanselmann Pottery Melissa is a Freelance Graphic Designer & Photographer, Visual Artist & Musician. She also likes to ride bicycles, observe (obsessively) cloud formations and explore nature.
Luke Parker was born in Minneapolis Minnesota to a family of misguided Laplanders. He spent most of his early life in the Dakotas and the Northwest before moving to New Mexico. He has studied, traveled, taken a degree, worked in disparate vocations and intervals and now fires the kilns, procures minerals, tests glazes, and assists with sales and marketing at Hanselmann Pottery.
Rachel Reynolds was born in Taos, New Mexico. She spent the majority of her early childhood in the Black Hills of South Dakota before traveling throughout Mexico, Central America, and the West Coast. She found, in the course of her travels, that crafting by hand is a tradition worth preserving. Her decision to invest in Hanselmann Pottery made the notion real.