From the Ground Up

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Michael Mahan has been making pots in the Seagrove area for more than 20 years. A former newspaper reporter, he now lives in Westmoore, nine miles south of Seagrove. He grew up in Miami, Florida, and moved to North Carolina in 1974. While attending N.C. State University, he wrote a couple of stories on potters while working as an intern at the Enquirer-Journal in Monroe, NC. Mahan took a couple of classes at the university and opened up Wild Rose Pottery in 1986. Mahan opened up his current shop in 1998. His work ranges from durable and functional tableware fired in a high-temperature electric kiln to delicate objects of art fired in a low-temperature wood-fired bank kiln. He forms the majority of his pots on the wheel. He also uses a slab roller -- a large table with two metal rollers to flatten large slabs of clay. He has three children: Wil, Chelsea, and Levi. He lives with his wife, Mary Holmes who grew up in Limerick, Ireland.