Floral Fantasies


May 8, 2024

Words by: Brandy Belitsky

Photography by: Jay Walker

The creative world of Jennifer Jong

In the bustling world of ceramics, Jennifer Jong of JYJ Ceramics transforms lumps of clay into exquisite pottery, beautifully marrying her technical prowess as a process engineer with her passion for ceramic arts. 

Jong’s serendipitous journey into pottery started with casual night classes at the City Arts Centre about 12 years ago. “After a few classes, I realized three hours a week was just not enough,” she reflects. The turning point came in the summer of 2019 when she joined The Shop, a studio offering 24-hour access. This opportunity allowed her to dive deeper into the craft by experimenting and refining her skills.

For Jong, pottery perfectly counterbalances her day job’s structured environment. “It allows me to use my hands and be creative in a different way, serving as a great de-stressor,” she explains. 

Her style is distinctly marked by floral designs, a choice that evolved from honing her pottery skills, to embracing her creative flair. Encouraged by her mentor, Kaleb Romano, Jong began experimenting with various decorative techniques, finding a particular affinity for integrating delicate floral patterns with modern, clean lines. This evolution in style transformed her view of herself, from a craftsman focused solely on technique, to an artist who breathes life into clay.

Jong’s creations are primarily wheel-thrown using stoneware from Plainsman Clay, locally sourced from Medicine Hat. She often colours the clay body, adding depth and vibrancy to her pieces, distinguishing them from solely glaze-dependent ceramics. Although wheel throwing remains her favourite technique due to its meditative qualities, she also ventures into slipcasting. This technique involves plaster moulds to create complex shapes, blending traditional and modern aesthetics by reviving vintage designs in a contemporary context.

Jong’s work is accessible to the public in the Art Gallery of Alberta, the Art Gallery of St. Albert, and through the Edmonton Arts Council. Those wishing to purchase her work can find select pieces at Hideout Distro and the Fairmont Hotel Macdonald gift shop. Some of Jong’s pieces extend into local dining, with restaurants like Kobachi, Moonga Sashimi and Moonga Nori incorporating her custom dishes into their tableware.


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