THE POETIC POTTER
A love of nature and family inspires every piece of Laura Venosa’s art.
Artist Laura Venosa’s work reflects her love of nature, her faithful muse.
Artist Laura Venosa traces her adoration of roses back to childhood, when her Nanny Sarah would serve tea in floral-patterned china. Today as a potter, Laura puts her own spin on what makes a beautiful table by creating elegant collections of mugs, dinnerware and more that are not only fanciful but also sturdy. Each intricate item is made from a blend of porcelain, stoneware and earthenware often finished in a soothing palette of white and muted shades. Pieces begin with simple shapes but are elevated to extraordinary with whimsical additions like handsculpted “Olivia Roses” named for her daughter.
Raised in New York City, Laura now makes her home on a Florida horse farm in the country with her children, Dante and Olivia, where they also run an organic chicken-egg business together. Laura spends mornings creating in her idyllic studio with wide-open views of the horse paddocks and trees. “Nature plays a big role in my life and my work,” she says. “I think the farm—draped with old oak trees—gives me a special energy to create.”
When she’s not collecting eggs or at the potter’s wheel, the industrious Laura can be found selling home goods at her shop, Verbena, which is nestled in the former Opera House building in historic downtown Ocala. Everything for sale is either handmade or handpicked by Laura herself: “I like things that are beautiful and purposeful. I make what I would love to have in my own home.”
“MY MIND IS LIKE A LIBRARY FILLED WITH designs… I JUST WISH MY hands COULD KEEP UP!”
Sweet and colorful birds do indeed flock together. TOP RIGHT: Whether she’s rolling clay in the studio
or making meatballs in the kitchen, Laura enjoys working with her hands. MIDDLE: Signature pieces such as a stack of nested cups and an embossed pitcher and small bowl in vintage white serve up unmatched style; a sweet lovebird adds a playful element. BOTTOM: “I’m a child of the sixties,” says Laura, who cites creative parents as influencers and describes her style as a mash-up of bohemian, ethereal and romantic. Laura became smitten with pottery
during a trip to Positano, Italy, in the eighties.
Laura enjoys making seasonal items like these bells, which are meant to hang in a garden. “I love gathering them all together and hanging them on an old chippy door!” she says. OPPOSITE, TOP LEFT: A love of cooking with herbs inspired this colorful set of stamped ceramic garden markers. TOP RIGHT: Laura describes her handiwork as “simple” but notes that each item has a “little surprise,” making them all quite unique and meaningful. MIDDLE: A best-selling patterned spoon rests on a favorite plate. BOTTOM RIGHT: Decorative patterns and subtle tints unify items into an inspired set. BOTTOM LEFT: Woodland motifs add beauty to mugs of various sizes and shapes.