Momi Palmieri

I was born and raised in Ohio. As newlyweds Terry Paul, baby Tep and I moved to Southern California in 1961 to start a new life and seek work for Terry, who was a budding guitar player. What an amazing time to be young and in the arts! Our friends and mentors were songwriters, musicians, artists, potters & sculptors. Screen writers. Actors. I worked in a bank in Beverly Hills, he hung out at The Troubador most nights to listen to music and meet musicians. He brought his new friends home to play music, share their voices, their families and new songs. Along the way we met Zalman King, actor, and his wife, Pat Knop, sculptor of larger-than-life clay sculptures. We visited Pat and Zalʻs home in Venice and were astounded by her sculptures and their collection of antiques and real carousel animals. Their home, their art (he was starring in The Young Lawyers on TV) and their little girls were magic. I had taken a city class in pottery but didnʻt have the call to throw on the wheel. I had purchased a how-to book on clay sculpture and excitedly told Pat of my new venture. I can still hear her say, “Get rid of the book. The books tell you what you cannot do, what the limitations are. Wedge up 25 lbs of clay. Then look at it as a pliable form: push, pull, use your eyes, hands and heart to ask the clay to assist you in bringing your vision alive.” I still have the first piece I sculpted from 25 lbs of clay and will forever remember her wisdom. Yes, if you listen, the clay will do as you ask. Our Wry Bred line of mugs, vessels and planters was born in our garage shop in Carlsbad in 1969. Terry was both a perfect guitar & bass player and wheel potter. I sculpted faces on the forms he threw for me; when he went on the road he would leave the shelves full of pieces for me to complete before he returned home. We built a high fire kiln in our side yard and the neighborhood would often gather when we opened the kiln to a new group of pots and mugs. Wry Bred; another load of our clay babies was born. I moved to Leavenworth in 1997. My life is a vibrant crazy quilt of passions: teaching traditional hula, Windermere RE Broker, Malamute Mama, time spent as a Dangerous Woman and thanks to Dawn Kranz, I am back to playing in clay. She provides the perfect forms and I sculpt the faces on them. Wry Bred is born again. I hope you enjoy them as much as I enjoy calling them from the clay.

With aloha, Momi