It was while perusing a small curated selection of wares displayed at the newly opened Firehouse Hotel gift shop in the Los Angeles Arts District when we came upon a tangle of totally tubular creations. The elongated twisting and squiggly shapes, coupled with a playful eye for color combinations elicited the inquiry, “Who made these?”
Under the moniker of Neenineen Studio, Los Angeles designer Ninon Choplin hand crafts a selection of ceramic creations colorfully celebrating the joys of caffeine and cannabis.
“When I started playing around with ideas for a new pipe design I got really inspired by old school water park slides. I love the super twisty multicolor ones,” remarks Choplin about the offbeat designs, “You look at them and instantly get a smile on your face and feel like a kid again. That’s the feeling I wanted people to have when they look at one of my pieces.”
Indeed, it was the enthusiastic combination of colors and movement these tubular pipes and coffee paraphernalia capture that drew our attention, with the texture and glazing offering a secondary appeal upon closer inspection.
Choplin credits a change in laws for altering public perception about cannabis, noting the pipes represent an era when “we can now leave our pipes proudly out on the coffee table”. It’s a proposition that seems even more appealing when the options for smoking tools have evolved into expression of craft and sculpture.