We ask our members to share a few thoughts: to introduce themselves to fellow members, and those who are interested in our community.

Ipek-Kotan-LrgIn this instalment, we interview Ipek Kotan of Studio Ipek Kotan.

Tell us about your business:
I’m a ceramic artist and make sculptural vessels. I’ve been commissioned by Cartier, interviewed by Vogue and Harper’s Bazaar and my artworks are in museums (including 3 pieces at the Boijmans Museum) and more than 250 private collections all over the world. I’ve had solo shows in New York, Berlin, Freiburg, Brussels and Bath. My next solo show will be in Boston.

What 5 words would you choose to describe your business?
Exciting, challenging, totally worth it!

What are your most popular products or services?
Decorative sculptural vessels.

What do you like best about owning a business?
That I get to make my own decisions.

What or who inspired you to start your business?
My independent, artistic and entrepreneurial spirit.

What makes your products/services special?
They’re very minimalist, modern and calm in nature. In today’s art market, that’s somewhat unusual.

Who is your role model or mentor?
I don’t really have any role models but there are a lot of artists I admire for one reason or another.

What is your biggest fear?
I don’t really have any big fears. I try to deal with issues one day at a time. Doesn’t mean I don’t have any worries, just means I’m more solution oriented rather than problem-focused and try to keep moving in the right direction and look ahead.

What motivates you on a daily basis?
Wanting to be better at what I do. I try to be a better version of myself.

What is the biggest challenge you’ve faced?
Trying to learn to not be my own worst critic!

What advice would you give women who are starting a business?
Make sure you choose something you love. Because no matter what you choose, there will be issues down the line, no matter how hard-working or talented you are. And if you choose something you love and you’re truly passionate about and invested in, it’ll make it a bit easier to deal with the issues that will come up.

What is your favourite business book?
Passion Economy by David Adamson.

What are your top tips for networking?
Be genuine!

How do you maintain a work/life balance?
I don’t!

How do you relax?
Watch my shows, read… the usual.

What place inspires you and why?
Natural beauty! I am drawn to volcanic islands, snowy mountains and tropical forests… The colors are intense, textures are interesting and there are usually few people. I find the energy in these places to be quite intense and the beauty breath-taking.

What are your future plans?
I’m currently making work for my biggest solo exhibition yet – 50 piece show in Boston at Pucker Gallery!

Thank you, Ipek!

For more information about Ipek Kotan and Studio Ipek Kotan, visit ipekkotan.com