While following a mathematics and engineering career at Carnegie Mellon University, Nicole Aquillano
takes numerous ceramics classes to balance out the rigidity of her intended vocation. She falls in love with the art of potting but cannot see making a living out of it.
Graduating a civil engineer, Nicole spends the next 8 years working for the EPA in Boston, Massachusetts while still longing to create out of clay.
A life changing event, to one dear to her heart, changes the course of this maker.
Realizing that she really wanted to be a ceramicist, Nicole enrolls and graduates from the prestigious Rhode Island School of Design, RISD, with an MFA in ceramics,
taking inspiration from her childhood home for her thesis.
In 2013 under the business name “Nicole Aquillano Ceramics,” Nicole officially leaves the EPA and becomes a full time ceramicist.
Nicole’s math and engineering background are the foundation from which her architectural eye
transforms and designs ethereal yet geometric and linear imagery on her ceramic and porcelain pieces.
Her “Bridge Collection”
Her beautifully executed pieces start with drawing the image into the clay using a dolan knife, with a blade similar to an exacto.
A quick tour of her Pittsburgh “study.” After drawing the desired image,
Nicole applies underglaze to the drawing and into the carved lines,
and cleans up.
The piece is now ready for bisque firing in the kiln, followed by another glaze firing at 2,350 degrees F.
Nicole’s work lends itself to a varied amount of commissioned jobs. Custom work for the Barnes Foundation
Her tiny long dish, leaning tower, Travel Collection,
and her custom home collection.
Beautiful one-of-a-kind wedding gifts,
and a collection of bud vases telling, with imagery, the story of her life;
Pittsburgh, New York, Boston, Chicago, Maine, San Francisco, Philadelphia, and bridges.
This Boston marathoner is loving her new creative life, is moving in all directions,
and has started testing and experimenting with color. Beautiful, rich, sumptuous color.
Last but not least, Nicole Aquillano Ceramics has been chosen as a Martha Stewart, American Made 2015 Finalist. You can vote here.
Team All New American is delighted to present the story of another ‘Made in the USA’ company, Nicole Aquillano Ceramics, a three year old small business making exquisitely executed ceramic and porcelain mugs, vases, and more, depicting the places and memories that are to dear to the heart.