Penguins with Purpose

January 20: Penguin Awareness Day
April 25: World Penguin Day

Penguins with Purpose Invade Pottery Studio

“I suspect there will be a sizable penguin colony in Duluth, Minnesota, by this time next year,” said Sharon Moen, a ceramic artist living in Duluth, Minnesota. Moen is known for echoing the Northwoods in her functional pottery, which she sells under the name FalconFire. But this year she is embarking on an endeavor to make scores of clay penguins. She calls them “Penguins with Purpose.”

“January 20 is Penguin Awareness Day,” said Moen. “I’m looking to the Southern Hemisphere and its penguins to deflect the political turmoil also marking this day. I’m deeply concerned about how current world politics might affect the future of this planet.”

Moen hopes the art installation and the way it comes together during the next 12 months will raise awareness about troubling subjects like changes in the Antarctic ice shelf, the atmosphere and the oceans. She cautions that not all the penguins will be happy ones; some will carry the weight and expression of social commentary.

“There’s something else about penguins, though,” said Moen. “People are delighted by them. People identify with these elegant, tenacious, funny and gregarious animals. It seems the human spirit wants to tap into those qualities. Besides, it’s hard to miss that they’re such snappy dressers.”

Moen and her daughters, Savanna and Sierra, will build online profiles for the penguins as they are finished. The completed ceramic penguins will be offered for sale, or, as Moen says, “adoption.” But, they will not be distributed until the colony has gathered for a photoshoot next January. FalconFire Pottery plans to donate at least five percent of penguin proceeds to support climate science and policy.

The Founders, every colony needs founders. Larson C is developing.


Penguin Mugs: $28 each plus shipping.