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Katie Pruden

Smoke fired earthenware ceramic sculpture embellished with copper leaf.

"Childhood memories of holidays to Cornwall, spending hours searching for pebbles with just the right markings, returning home with my pockets (and those of my parents) filled to the brim; it is this early fascination with natural forms that continues to provide inspiration for my ceramic explorations today.

My work is all about contrast; contrasting shapes, surfaces, colours, techniques, processes. Spiky and smooth, light and dark, controlled and unpredictable; it is these contrasts which ultimately create balance within each piece.

The making process is controlled. I spend a great deal of time smoothing the surface but spikes are often added one by one to provide a pleasing contrast. Smoke firing is then used to introduce an unpredictable surface pattern to the ceramic forms. Finally copper leaf is used to embellish the surface adding warmth and vibrancy to the finished piece. 

My work to date has often focused on the spherical form but more recently I have begun to manipulate this whilst still maintaining the surfaces that have become intrinsic to my work.  Coiling and extruding techniques have been introduced in order to achieve more elongated shapes that create an interesting juxtaposition with my pebble forms and provide the basis for a new direction in my work."