Georgia-based clay artist and makeup/special effects enthusiast Kevin Merck has combined his passions while cranking out some of the most harrowing coffee mugs known to humankind.
Merck — who operates under the name Turkey Merck Pottery — has been working behind pottery wheels for the past 15 years, although his zombie-themed mugs have received a major uptick in notoriety in the past week following several high-profile feature stories.
Merck’s mugs come in one of two primary varieties — original and cast ceramic, each with a different price point. The cast ceramic mugs are based on Merck’s original designs and do also include custom paint jobs and glazes, meaning no two look exactly the same.
While “brains” were notably absent from the SCAA’s newly reinvented Coffee Taster’s Flavor Wheel, we nonetheless were dying to know if the mugs could be made available for wholesale clients.
“Since I am making each one by hand I’m not able to produce enough for wholesale at the moment but I’m working on making that a possibility at some point in the near future,” Merck told Daily Coffee News. “I’m looking at the option of outsourcing production of new designs so I could offer wholesale prices. This would allow me to offer a specific design at a lower price to my customers, also.”
In his 15 years of selling mugs, Merck has found a consistently enthusiastic niche market composed of zombie-lovers willing to pay a higher price for one-of-a-kind pieces, although he’s not opposed to exploring mass production. Said Merck, “If I have a version mass produced they will definitely lose some of the quality, but I think I can find a manufacturer that can produce something that I would approve of.”