Originally posted April 21, 2009
Editor: This is the first of several posts about local OB heroes that we will be pulling out of our archives.
Any artist with the moniker of EZ is going to have to live up to the nickname. Isauro Elizondo does that in the first 30 seconds of conversation. Owner of Falling Sky Pottery on the corner of Abbott & Santa Monica, EZ is one of those individuals who makes you feel like a friend as soon as you walk in the door. Life is good for the potters at Falling Sky. The view from the showroom is the pier, the beach and the Pacific Ocean . There is no computer on the premises and there is no computer or television at home. At Falling Sky it’s all about the art of the craft.
It was the early 80′s; EZ had been traveling from Europe to Japan . When he returned to the states he was invited by a friend to visit. It turns out that his friend lived right on the cliffs at the foot of Orchard Street. He put aside plans to visit South America and took odd jobs until he landed at Falling Sky. After apprenticing for 15 years, the baton of ownership was passed to him about four years ago.
When asked how his craft has changed him, EZ described his growth in gradual steps. First, he would sit at the potters’ wheel and ask, “What do I want to express about myself?”
As the relationship between artist and medium grew the thought process evolved to “What does the clay want to express about the artist?”
Finally, as his comfort level matured, the thinking evolved to “Let the clay decide”. Now EZ sees his relationship with the clay as being a dance that grows into a finished piece of pottery.
EZ imparts his knowledge by giving lessons. The classes are small, six to eight students per class, once a week for six weeks. At the moment the classes are in the evening but, there seems to be an interest in daytime classes–which may happen later this summer.
As our interview came to an end at the OB Noodle House on Cable Street, we finished the slurping of noodles, the check arrived along with the traditional fortune cookies. EZ’s read: “Others take notice of your radiance”. I certainly did.
Gary Gilmore, owner of a goldsmith shop on Newport, has recently joined the OB Rag blog as a community blogger. This is his first post.