J SCHATZ IS A HANDMADE CERAMICS COMPANY BASED IN PROVIDENCE, RHODE ISLAND.
Before J Schatz, Jim was an abstract conceptual artist in Harlem, New York. He then began making small ceramic pieces out of a kiln the size of a hatbox right out of his apartment. During this time (in the 90’s), the Egg Lamp was birthed. This was the piece that lead Jim in the more design-minded direction that would later become J Schatz.
The company was initially called Egg Lamps. This name simply wouldn’t keep because you learn — as you progress and continue as a brand and business — that with design and other creative endeavors, you just can’t restrict yourself with just the one idea.
In 2003, Jim was fortunate to have a small cabin in the middle of the woods where he could continue working on ceramics. Jim didn't have all the necessary facilities in making ceramics so he built up different rooms and spaces in the cabin to accommodate each part of the ceramics-making process. Just being out there in nature, he was inspired and influenced in ways that made it possible for him to create one of a kind products.
PETER MEETS JIM
Before Peter met Jim, he was living in Fort Lauderdale, Florida. He worked in real estate but always had his workshop. The night he met Jim, things instantly clicked. They quickly moved to Los Angeles together to continue working as J Schatz. Peter already had experience working with his hands in a creative field and Jim started teaching him everything that he had learned about ceramics.
With Peter now involved in the company, more things were introduced in deciding what to make together. It often takes that secondary mind to help you realize what something could possibly become.
J SCHATZ: HANDMADE CERAMICS
Jim and Peter worked in LA for a while, but things just didn't work out the way they wanted. It was decided that they would pack up their operation and move to Providence, Rhode Island. This is where they found a warehouse to both work and live in. It was a place where they could begin to foster a more like-minded creative community that they were really pushing for back in LA.
It was the egg bird feeder created in 2004 that propelled Jim and Peter to be able to continue doing what they love to do. It gained all sorts of press, but a whole year and a half prior J Schatz hadn’t been making any real money. That being said, it wasn’t about the money so much as it was just having the resource to keep creating and designing.
Today, with much more notoriety under their belt, J Schatz continues to create one of a kind products that have an iconic, timeless aesthetic. They’re unsure of exactly where they see themselves in the future but they just want to keep designing and trying out new things.