JOYCE BYRUM

I began my love affair with clay in the mid 80’s at the University of Louisville in Kentucky, my hometown.  I am proud to say clay has been the longest, most challenging and ultimately fulfilling of partnerships.  I make my art because I like getting “down & dirty”, I call it my “mudpie therapy”.  Putting my hands in the raw clay, spontaneously creating ideas, designs- often inspired by nature, my relationships, my travels- is my deepest meditation.    

This newer body of work -the Spirit House series- is a cultural symbol showing respect for the spirits of the land, as if the ancestors are inhabiting within, “guardian angels” to the present owners.  By firing these in a pitfire in the sand or a raku kiln, when the sculptures emerge from the ashes, they appear as ancient, sacred statues emerging to protect and nourish.

My work is often sculptural, either hand-built slabs or wheel-thrown and altered- desiring an imperfect presentation,  By adding my own textures & symbols, each pot is a fresh attempt at bringing my vision into being.  The final step in the process is choosing the glaze palette, the firing technique and then, the moment of birth!

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