Laura Hewitt started her career in arts as a sculptor in mixed media. When people asked her about her work, she said she often heard herself answer, “Well, it’s not anything, exactly.” And thus, It’s Not Anything Exactly {INAE} Enterprises was born.


INAE  - river frontage mugs

INAE – river frontage mugs


Laura’s ceramics are an otherworldly hybrid of organic and machine, mysterious and tactile. Textures like moonscapes combine with teeth, bolts and mystical and mathematical symbols to create work that is reminiscent equally of HR Giger and Shaun Tan.


INAE - biomech stoneware bowl

INAE – biomech stoneware bowl


This is her full-time job now after first starting on this path in 1984 (“at last, at last!”). Initially studying ceramics and drawing and then receiving an MFA in interdisciplinary studies, Laura went on to teach metalsmithing and drawing at Fairbanks University, Alaska, and has had her work in over 200 exhibitions. Talk about a long haul!

It really started even much earlier than that, and Laura is grateful for her gradeschool teachers when she was younger.  “I got to spend time out in the hall alone working on my own projects or asked to create the classroom bulletin boards, sometimes extra art assignments.  I was very fortunate to have them.  They made me feel my creativity was special and valuable.”


INAE - industrial wedding cake teapot and teacups

INAE – industrial wedding cake teapot and teacups


Her work now is profoundly inspired by the “dichotomies and juxtapositions” of the Alaskan landscape, and she finds “more inspiration comes from outside the studio than in it. I’m particularly interested in exploring the intersections between technology and nature, art and craft, destruction and creation.”  Thrown into the mix of inspiration are many writers and philosophers too; “Mostly scifi and surreal decadent fiction writers and French post structuralist philosophers.”


INAE - Ohms AC Law bowls

INAE – Ohms AC Law bowls


Laura is full of dichotomies herself; after spending many years as a teacher and facing up to classes every day, her answer to the question “If I gave you a cardboard box, a marker pen and a sharp knife, what would you do/make with them?”, her answer was “Cut two holes in it, draw a smiley face on the outside and put it over my head.  Instant social skills.”


INAE - two typewriter bowls

INAE – two typewriter bowls


She describes her studio in rural Alaska as a beautiful work in progress, “It changes a lot but right now it’s white, minimalistic, overly organized, everything in it’s place but with windows overlooking the most incredible landscape on the planet.”


Laura has two favourite pieces of advice.

” “Don’t let anything stop you”[from being creative]. These words were said to me by someone much older who had let all sorts of things get in their way so it really meant something.  I think I was maybe 7 or 8 but I knew it was an adult conversation, an Adult Moment.  I’ll never forget it; I feel like I was shot in the heart with those words.”


View from Laura's window

The view from Laura’s window

And the second?

” “If you aren’t making mistakes, you aren’t trying hard enough”.  That was said by Dr. Steve Kurtz of Critical Art Ensemble who I was very fortunate to have as an instructor in grad school.  I didn’t like hearing it at the time at all.  I just wanted to do a bunch of perfect little arty things, get good grades, get my degree and get out of school as simply and smoothly as possible.  He gave me a much needed kick at the time and it still holds true now when I find myself cranking out perfect little arty things and not going anywhere.”


You can find more of Laura’s work in her Etsy shop, inaeent, and on her own website,