Helen Baron - Helen Baron
I am a potter, tile maker and mosaic artist. I live and work in rural Hertfordshire and my roots are firmly in the English countryside. I make a range of domestic earthenware pots, sawdust fired burnished pots, bas relief tiles, and mosaics using my own ceramic tesserae. I am on a continuing quest for the pots which I should be making. I have had many false dawns, but some successes and I think I'm finally arriving at some conclusions. For smoke fired pots: I’m trying to make shapes which act as a canvas for the extraordinary, otherworldly landscapes and skyscapes that the smoke, salts, metals and oxides create on the burnished surfaces of my white earthenware pots in the pit kiln. This method is endlessly exciting and the very best pots seem to me to bring together earth, sky, fire and humanity. For domestic pots: I want to make pots which look as if they're made of clay, are in the English tradition, are straightforward and a pleasure to use, are timeless, retain the life and energy they have when first thrown, have decoration which seems like a part of the pot. And in my very long odyssey in search of the Perfect Jug, I'm trying to make the kind of jug that Tess of the D'Urbevilles might have filled with armfuls of wild flowers and plonked on the kitchen table after a romantic walk.