Dan Farrenkopf ’05Dan Farrenkopf ’05My directions to Lunaform, printed off the pottery studio’s website, warn, Persevere. It sure is remote. So I cross the bridge over Taunton Bay, just past Ellsworth, turn left at the Sullivan green, take a right on Track, bear left on Cedar, and at last I’m there, gazing up at a 1,450-pound, 5-foot-tall vessel cradled in a metal stand atop a column marking Lunaform’s driveway. The vase is so beautiful it takes my breath away.

A collection of tall vessels and a Tibetan prayer wheel stand just outside the studio entrance, where I’m greeted by Phid Lawless, who co-founded Lunaform 25 years ago. Lawless, who studied architecture and product design as an undergrad and spent five years as a painter, says he was drawn to this work when he was living on this property, a former quarry that produced the stone lining the Washington Monument’s shell, and wanted to landscape the exposed granite. “I was looking for big urns, and they simply weren’t available then,” he says. “I loved Maxfield Parrish paintings where he’d throw in a big old pot.”

At the time, Lawless ran a sporting goods business in Ellsworth and Bar Harbor, but he also designed houses and was a painter and cement potter on the side. That’s how he met his business partner, Dan Farrenkopf ’05, a garden designer working on Mount Desert Island. “To have a business where the design process is part of every day is lucky,” Lawless says. “I do 10 times the designing that an architect gets to do.”

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