James DeRosso has loved making ceramics for as long as he can remember, but his mugs and bowls weren’t selling well. That’s when he discovered how people responded to the small figures he was making for fun.
With their bulging eyes and toothy grins, DeRosso’s ceramic monsters may be too cute to scare anyone this Halloween. But they do express the full range of monster emotions, from slightly menacing to dimwitted goofiness.
After 15 years as a potter, DeRosso created his first monsters figures as guardian creatures to put on top of his kiln to ward off bad results during firings. Friends liked them so much, he started making these creatures to sell.
Now it’s all about monsters for DeRosso, who seems to have an infinite number of the whimsical creatures in his imagination. He also helps others find their inner monster by teaching classes in school classrooms and to private groups of kids and adults.
Look for a full profile of James DeRosso on Oregon Art Beat later this season.