Hagen, Karen

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Undulating and raw edges are the mark of Karen Hagen’s earthy, lava-like cement pots. With an extensive background in ceramics, Karen turned to this unusual medium creating vessels that appear sprung from nature with folded pleats of cement embellished with leaf patterns and subdued tones.

Karen is originally from California and attended the University of California in Santa Barbara. In 1978, she and her growing family moved to Felton, in the Santa Cruz Mountains where she began an adventure as part owner of Santa Cruz Pottery. Working day and night she created functional pottery for the home and garden while raising her daughters.

In 2002, she moved to the Big Island and bought a small house at Kaloli Point. She began making pots, gardening, and exploring the beautiful Big Island. After building a home and studio in 2004, she became inspired to work with cement, hence the birth of “Lava Pots.” This body of work grew out of awe and respect for the incredible lava landscape found in Hawai`i. The pots are handcrafted with a custom concrete blend and purposely contain no lava. Karen states “It is my intent to offer the look and feel of lava without disturbing the environment. The leaf impressions are from plants growing in my garden in Puna. Please enjoy these pots as a reminder of our beautiful ʻāina. “

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