Marshall’s clean, sophisticated vessels provide a modern backdrop to contemporary cuisine.

Image: Talyn Sherer

If the term ceramics conjures images of clunky, hippie-esque earthenware or brightly painted pieces a la Color Me Mine, think again. From dishes to décor, pottery pieces are making a beautiful comeback in renditions that are modern, minimal, and the epitome of understated elegance.

Take, for example, the handmade dinnerware created by local artist Clark Marshall of CM Ceramics. Marshall, who grew up in Provo and studied ceramics at Utah State University, has perfected his craft over the last 20 years. His simple, sculptural plates—made with his unique formula of clay in four standard colors: white, black, brown, and gray, all with a matte finish—are used to set the tables at stylish homes and hip restaurants throughout Utah, including Tupelo in Park City and Table X, Pallet, and Provisions in Salt Lake. “I love working with raw clay—it makes a great canvas for the professional and home chef,” he explains.

Beyond the table, Marshall is extending his collection to include items for kitchen and bath and will even offer custom, large-scale pottery, including tree planters and hand-thrown bathtubs. “The old convention of glazed white porcelain needs a serious upgrade,” he says. And Marshall is up to the task.

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