100 Days of Design Blog

Michele Quan of MQuan: Transferring her energy to ceramic art for the home

MQuan HeadshotChanneling her characteristic energy and creativity, Michele Quan ofMQuan Studio designs and sculpts handmade ceramic art and objects for the home and garden. Her pieces have become a canvas for her love of drawing, painting, text and color. In her Brooklyn studio, she builds the ceramic forms by hand, which are then wheel thrown, or slip cast in stoneware and porcelain. She also just added a capsule collection of silver and 18K gold jewelry.
Originally from Vancouver, Canada, Michele moved to New York City in 1984 to study graphic design and photography at Parsons School of Design. We recently asked her a few question about her design inspirations, and the new products she’s introducing at the summer market. You’ll find her in Accent on Design® in the NY EyeNOW HOME collection.
Q: Are you the sole MQuan designer? Where do your design inspirations come from?
A: Yes, I alone design my work, but have a few young artists who help me to produce it. Design inspirations come from so many different places. I tend to think they come from words and ideas. I either read about the symbology of an image, or I attach an image to the words and jump from there.
Q: You incorporate a variety of materials in your pieces. Which of these do you most enjoy Cresent Moonworking with the most?
A: I love all the materials I use, each for their unique qualities. Wood, cotton fabric, hemp rope; they all work well with stoneware and porcelain, bringing a softness, a type of support and buffer to the hardness and fragility of the fired clay.
Q: What products are your “best sellers?” Why do you think they have such appeal with your customers?
A: The bells have been the best sellers, although I see the painted objects catching up to them. The bells are a universal symbol that seems to inspire a similar feeling in people.
Pic 3Q: What new products will you be introducing at the summer NY NOW in August? What was the inspiration behind these new products?
A: Last February I focused on The Eye, The Sun, The Moon and The Stars. Those have always been ongoing themes in my work, so now that I feel as if I connected them, I’m moving forward with that same theme, changing some, adding some… it’s all in process now.


Eyes in W Magazine!

VERY honored to have EYES in W Magazines June/July Art issue in an article about Philippe Vergne & Sylvia Chivaratanond. Thank you for mentioning my work! Article written by Karin Nelson.

Elizabeth Street Garden



MQuan Birdhouse at Lost & Found in LA mentioned in the NYTimes! Thanks Judy Kameon of Elysian Landscapes!



7 Bells to Play, installed at the very beautiful & inspired Coral & Tusk & Friends Pop Up Shop in Brooklyn.

Custom Porcelain & Brass Lights- Amagansett

Real Simple

Real Simple, Thank you!

A Particular Kind of Solitude

I love this dreamy photo of the Crystal Quartz Outcropping installed in a show curated by Serra Sabuncuoglu

A Particular Kind of Solitude- An exhibition inspired by the writings of Robert Walser for the Elizabeth Street Garden



Beautiful weekend at GRDN in Brooklyn with great people, sweets, bubbly, delicious food, a little rainstorm and a lot of sun. If you've never been to this garden store, check it out. Thank you!


Eyes Open

And the trick is to stay propped up for 50 or 60 or 70 or 80 or 90 years. Yes eyes open while the flies get stuck in the paper and the great paintings are stolen and the faithful wives run off with the unfaithful lovers, all to die in the morning, unclasped and cold and kissless. Charles Bukowski



NY Gift Show: NYNow... a little spray paint always helps

Remodelista- Current Obsessions

Thanks Alexa for including me in your 'current obsessions' for The Lunar New Year. Happy new year!