OBJECTS – In his latest book New Wave Clay, Tom Morris breaks down the liberalizing force of inventive young designers revitalizing ceramics through their fresh perspectives on the ancient material. The instant gratification of the digital revolution plays no small part in this rediscovered thrill that many young people are finding in ceramics, says Morris. ‘Clay objects offer a warmth, opacity, tactility and depth that counteract the glassy, transparent austerity of a world full of technology,’ he writes in his introduction to the book.
To be clear, Morris is not simply referring to the studio pottery movement of artisans reacting to the industrialization of pottery. Though he features their dedication to the material and pushing of the boundaries of technique and method in the book, Morris is also interested in highly experimental artists – joining the trajectory of Pablo Picasso and Ai Weiwei – who are working with clay in unorthodox and expressionist ways.
‘It is my intention to be feckless and not be restricted by the labels and industry limitations that pigeonholed pottery over the 20th century,’ says Morris. For that reason, New Wave Clay does not categorize the 55 people in the book according to achievement or technique. They are instead arranged according to the feelings elicited in the viewer by their work.
Find below excerpts from New Wave Clay, by Tom Morris, out now in the Frame Store.
Joy: John Booth