John Jacobs practiced and taught ceramics at Pasadena City College in California for 34 years after graduating with a BFA degree from San Francisco Art Institute and an MA from San Jose State University. He now lives and works in Shetland where he and his wife Jane opened The Vidlin Pottery and Studio in 2007. John built his own high fire gas kiln and makes his own clay and glazes, which have been developed from his training in traditional Asian ceramics. His functional ware responds to the Shetland landscape.
Jacobs has shown nationally and internationally over fifty years and his work has been published in books, catalogues and ceramics publications around the world.
He says of his work,
“I have always made my clay and glazes from locally sourced raw materials. My early formative training was focused on Asian forms and philosophies. I use old traditional glazes that I have reformulated to work in my kilns at my temperatures. My shapes remain traditional but my use of glaze colours and oxides is always representational of the landscape that I am working in.