For more than forty years there's been a pottery studio and home in the woods off of Fox Pass Cutoff in Hot Springs, Arkansas. There are dogs and cats and a garden out front and some of the most exceptional pottery in America.
Barbara and Jim Larken have been creating everything from plates and bowls to olive oil canisters and colanders. Collectively they've won so many awards it's kind of silly to list them anymore. Their glazes seem magical and their lines are poetic so I always want to touch everything in the shop.
If you are lucky, when you visit Jim will be at his wheel or Barbara will be building/creating, by hand, something so beautiful or whimsical you'll feel blessed to watch her work.
But it's the shop itself that brings me delight. There's an old Dallas Bump rocking chair next to a heavy wood burning stove. There's beautiful light and the air its self seems tinged with something that makes me feel better about the world.
Back in the 60's Barbara and Jim were my very favorite camp counselors at Brookhill Ranch. Barbara taught us to make beautiful crafts. And Jim, who was a long lanky cowboy back then, taught us to ride without hanging on to the horn, how to put a saddle on a horse that weighed more than I did and we learned all the horse parts, like fetlock and withers.
If your're visiting Hot Springs, make the trip! If you live here and you've never been you're missing another experience that makes Hot Springs such an extraordinary place.
PS If you liked this post I hope you'll check out the other post at Hot Springs Love. More cool stuff in Hot Springs that I love.
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