Rimma Tchilingarian, product designer

So much of the current frenzy around ceramics revolves around what feats each practitioner can achieve with glaze, whether it’s Adam Silverman’s volcanic pots, Dana Bechert’s carved vases, or Ben Fiess’s brushstroked jars. But for the just-graduated Berlin-based product designer Rimma Tchilingarian, it’s the properties of the clay itself that fascinated her the most. “I wanted to work with porcelain at a very basic level, free of conventions or rules, creating raw and unglazed surfaces or coloring the snow-white material with pigments,” she says of her first collection At the Studio, for which colored or textured parts can be combined into a whole. She burned paper to achieve a crinkled effect and mixed in pigment to get that on-trend marbled look but has yet to experiment with the thing so many of her brethren obsess over. We were so smitten with the results of her first collection we asked her to tell us a little bit more.
Describe your most recent project and how it was made:
“At the Studio is a collection of two-part porcelain vases, which can be combined in any way you want. During my research it became clear to me that when people think of porcelain, they sometimes have in mind this picture of gold-rimmed sweeping kitsch. For years, the goal was to perfect porcelain’s formula and to display its exclusiveness through ostentatious decoration.”

“From the beginning of this project, I wanted to work with porcelain at a very basic level, free of conventions or rules, creating raw and unglazed surfaces while coloring the snow-white material with pigments. The whole collection was made using a casting process, which allowed me to generate the same form several times while applying colors and experimenting with surfaces to make each vase unique. For example in my Surface Vase, I transferred irregular paper folds into the texture of the porcelain.”
Describe your next project and how you’re currently making it:
“My next project is to extend the range of colors in this collection by changing the ratio of slip cast and pigments, still without using any glaze. I find it very interesting and exciting to feel the pure material, which is why I prefer unglazed surfaces. Besides porcelain, I also tinker with textiles and compose small collages.”kreisel_01
Tell us one thing that’s been inspiring you lately and why:
“For quite some time, I’ve been interested in the kind of natural patterns that you see in the structure of plants or wood and in transforming these irregular grids into something three-dimensional. I like the idea of bringing a piece of nature to ones’ work.”
Studio Rimma Tchilingarian studio_rimma_tchilingarian_07studio_rimma_tchilingarian_03
Show us your studio and tell us what you like about it:
“I am lucky to work and kiln at a porcelain studio of a friend of mine. This is such a benefit of living in Berlin. There is always somebody to help out either with space or a kiln. For my other work beside the porcelain I have a great working space in my apartment, where I spend a lot of time every day. There is a lot of sunlight coming in from outside, many plants inside, and my dog who keeps an eye on me while working.”
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