These 20 Artists Are Shaping the Future of Ceramics
This vase is Gareth Mason's reinterpretation of a traditional vase shape. The contemporary ceramist created the piece between 2006 and 2013, using a technique that characterizes his recent work. It incorporates a variety of clays (porcelain and stoneware) and glazes, as well as oxides, feldspar, and lustre, to create a highly textural and polymorphic piece. His process imitates on a human scale of time and space that of natural geological phenomena occurring when different materials converge and react over millions of years. The intensity of each piece and the convergence of disparate parts of the earth by hand stands as a microcosm.
“The best art,” Gareth Mason has said, “irrespective of the discipline, is felt first and reasoned later.” As one of Britain’s most individual ceramists, Mason strives to reveal the mysteries of creation and the humanity of the artist himself. He is known for his ceramic jars, which are constructed through an unconventional and improvisational approach; in a metamorphic process that often spans several years, Mason’s hand-thrown jars undergo multiple firings, glazings, and the addition of various materials (scraps such as gravel from the Victorian slate industry or waste scavenged from the Thames River). The resulting work—avant-garde forms likened to small cosmic explosions—are unrivaled in their richness of color, texture, and density.