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Set in the Miombo Woodland of Harare, Zimbabwe, Mutapo Pottery brings to life intricate patterns dreamed up by its owner Marjorie Wallace. Specialising in porcelain mixed in-studio, Mutapo’s range of crockery is recognised and revered for its unique blue-and-white detailing, where every piece is delicately moulded, glazed and decorated by hand.

Mutapo’s pieces – from milk jugs and dessert bowls, to dinner plates and serving dishes – are finished with surface designs inspired by traditional basket weaving and African wax prints. Marjorie’s methods of experimentation (using foam-rubber stamps and fabric prints, or water trickled with fine minerals) have led to porcelain pieces that reflect their designer’s meticulous attention to detail and flare for creating order out of patterned chaos.

‘Pottery is universal. It is at the root of our ideas about creativity. Earth is taken, mixed with water, dried by the air and transformed by fire.’
Marjorie Wallace

Mutapo has received warm receptions around the world, most notably at Habitat’s Platform Gallery in London, where it was exhibited through Design Network Africa, a programme to which it has belonged since 2011. Mutapo’s collectible pieces have shown at GUILD International Design Fair in Cape Town, and Afrika Handmade in Kenya, and Marjorie was part of an invited team of global ceramicists who created a feature for the International Friendship Park in Cincinnati.

Marjorie Wallace graduated from Michaelis School of Fine Art in Cape Town before returning to Harare as an art teacher. In 1992 she purchased Mutapo Pottery, where she’s been working with Jairos Zangira, an expert clay-thrower, for 23 years, and more recently with Jairos’ son Basil who mixes the porcelain made from local and regional ingredients. Marjorie specialises in decorating, ensuring that every Mutapo piece is touched by her attentively gentle hand.