I am fascinated by the processes of pottery and the possibilities of making the most basic elements of life—earth, water, fire, air and ether—eloquent. Minerals made plastic by water and shaped by a human hand, hardened by air and fire, ultimately emerging as a form that exists in and at times contains space; that the most basic elements of creation can effect a transcendental experience is truly magical.
One of the most appealing aspects of pottery is that it can affect the viewer directly and intuitively, bypassing narrative and conceptual issues which preclude the possibility of deeper artistic experiences. There are absolute values in art, universally meaningful symbols which transcend local culture, history, and other limiting boundaries. Pottery’s freedom from intellectual constraints is one of its greatest strengths. It can exist simply as line in relation to line, as texture, as dynamic volume, as color in relation to color.
In my work I seek to realize the same simple elegance, strength, and beauty that I find in nature. I strive for my work to be not a mere abstraction of nature but rather an actual expression of it. I desire only to be directed and inspired by that great original force which pervades all life.
I have been influenced by the rich ceramic traditions of Asia, particularly its folk kilns, and the ways these potters have incorporated the simple, honest designs of nature in their work. I have spent nearly two years in China, Korea and Japan working, studying and visiting kilns, museums and galleries. These experiences have deepened my appreciation for the extent to which Asian potters have understood the essence of clay and celebrated this material and its processes.