WORKING STUDIO

 
The technical side of my work has focused on using soda firing and the space within the kiln as a creative element in my making process to develop a new palette of colour and surface texture closely integrated with the form.

I use one clay, one colouring mineral and a single firing with soda.
— Jack Doherty
 

Over the years the techniques have become simpler but more refined, in the belief that stripping away what is unnecessary can produce work with complexity and depth. I enjoy working with porcelain for its extraordinary white and luminous quality. My palette of colour is achieved through the versatility of copper. Sometimes elusive and capricious it can give a wide range of colour depending on the firing temperature and kiln atmosphere. The kiln is a vital creative element in my making process. The long firing alternates between oxidisation and reduction atmospheres, the surface texture is produced by blasting the forms with a sodium solution at high temperature.

I live and work from my home based studio in Mousehole, a small fishing village overlooking the atlantic ocean. It has taken a long time to find a way of making work that allows me to tell some of the stories I love and to make pots which come from this place of sea and rock, wind and sky. My family were fishermen living on the north coast of Ireland so I feel that my journey to Cornwall has brought me back to my roots.

The ceramic forms I enjoy most are often simple shapes that come from pre-history. Vessels and containers that in their time were essential to survival, storing food and keeping people safe in this world and beyond. My visits to Japan have shown me something of the immense diversity of contemporary ceramics practice but have also enriched my understanding of how traditional and spiritual values can be inspirational in a changing technological world.