Interview: Avgi Kalogianni | Photos: Todd Marshard
Pottery is a creative outlet and challenge
Hidden in the picturesque alleys of Lefkes, right before the great church of Aghia Triada (Holy Trinity) lies the workshop of Todd Marshard. In perfect harmony with the surroundings, the shop –and workshop- lets you into the world of the artist who left New York and a successful career as a fashion photographer, and landed on Paros where he opened his shop and dedicated himself on the art of ceramics. His pottery, unique and personal, his photos on the walls echo his past as a fashion photographer and his creations with pebbles or other materials picked up from the beaches of Paros, speak of his relation with nature.
Interviewing Todd was pleasant and relaxing, like chatting with an old friend. So, here is the portrait of the artist in his own words.
I bought a house on Paros five years ago. During the first three years I would come for about seven months every year but two years ago I moved here full-time and opened up my workshop and gallery. It really wasn’t a hard decision to move from New York to Paros. I am so grateful for my time in New York City but Paros is a perfect fit right now in my life.
I discovered the art of ceramics some time ago and it became a new creative outlet and challenge. The more I worked on ceramics the more I realized I needed to be centered, grounded and present in order to be susessful in creating what I had in my mind. It brought me a peace of mind that was not only productive and healthy but therapeutic.
Leaving my profession as a fashion photographer, focusing on ceramics and settling on Paros has been a win-win situation. My life here feels complete and there’s not much I miss about New York except my daughter being close by. I’ve been coming to Greece for over fifteen years visiting friends on the island of Antiparos and have fallen in love with the Aegean Sea and the Cycladic islands.
For me, this a situation that puts me in an amazing state of mind where I’m exploring something new with my career and my life and it brings in new energy. I feel like I’m back in college exploring something new and being totally excited and creative.
Living here has definitely affected my work as a ceramic artist. I am constantly now out in nature surrounded by the Aegean Sea. This change in lifestyle has been overwhelming, nurturing and has inspired me to focus on the beauty of nature and its purity. I try my best to put that back into my work.
I hope I have offered something to Paros and the village of Lefkes since I am so appreciative and feel blessed for what they’ve offered me.